Lagos state Governor, Babatunde Fashola yesterday asked the Federal Government to stop imposing the national minimum wage on states, saying “central wage policy should be made away with.”
Fashola, who spoke during a courtesy visit by the participants of the 36 course of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, NIPSS at the Lagos House, Alausa Ikeja, led by NIPPS Director of Research, Prof. Olu Obafemi.
Fashola said compelling states to pay a wage they did not fix was an aberration in a federal arrangement.
He noted that states did not earn the same revenue, saying “states with less resource might find it difficult to pay the wages of their workers.”
“Asking state governments to pay civil servants a certain wage fixed at the centre is like asking everybody to wear the same shoe even when size varies.
“States don’t generate the same revenue. While some generate a lot, others generate so little, that paying such fixed fund affects their developmental strive.
“I think the best thing is to allow the states to fix and pay wages according to their capacities,” he said.
Fashola, however, advised labour unions against embarking on frequent strikes as the practice lowered productivity hence, undermining the national economy.
He urged the unions to always explore the dialogue option to resolve differences with their employers for the sake of industrial harmony.
Fashola said the state government was committed to the welfare of workers in the state and had initiated a number of programmes to demonstrate that.
Obafemi, who led the 30 participants, commended the Fashola for his interventionist strides in the state, adding that the participants were in the state on a study tour of how the state government was driving development with the civil serve.
According to him “We have gone round and we are deeply impressed with the massive public service infrastructure you have in place here and how well your personnel are oiling the machinery of government.”