Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma has tasked the Technical Committee on the Implementation of a new Minimum Wage inaugurated last Wednesday by President Muhammadu Buhari, headed by Bismarck Rewane, to identify additional sources of revenue to pay the minimum wage and the consequential salary adjustment that will follow.
During an interactive session with some newsmen, Udoma said that the committee would, among other things, identify additional sources of revenue to ensure that the government could meet the increased costs that would arise from the implementation of a new minimum wage without affecting government’s ability to meet the other obligations, particularly with respect to the ambitious infrastructure development plans of the current administration.
The Minister explained that whenever a new minimum wage bill is enacted, there are demands for some wage increases even from those already earning more than the new minimum wage.
Udoma said, “All these salary increases will impose additional costs on the government. Therefore, the committee is expected to make suggestions as to how the government can raise additional revenues to ensure that the government can still meet its expenditure on other services such as education, health, infrastructure and other important functions of the government, after paying the increased salaries.”
The new minimum wage had been addressed by President Buhari, during the 90 minutes interview which was dedicated to usher-in preparation for the 2019 election, as well as serve as voters’ education platform.
While defending the choice not to increase the minimum wage as demanded by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), President Buhari said before his administration resume office, there were States that couldn’t pay salaries between 1999 and 2014, and bailout had to be administered by his government twice.
To buttress his point, President Buhari quoted a Hausa adage about a mad woman who tried to load tied sticks on her head but couldn’t because of the weight, instead of reducing the sticks, she added more to it.
“When they can’t pay the basic salary of N18,000 per month, they said it should go to N30,000. My budget presentation is not a secret, I read it out loud, where do we find the money. Do we print more currency? If we do it, we cannot control inflation.” President buhari said.
What may interest you about Bismarck Rewane
Bismarck J. Rewane is a Non-Executive Director at FCMB Bank (UK) Ltd. since 2009. Rewane serves as the Managing Director and Chief Executive of Financial Derivatives Company Limited.