As the National Assembly continues deliberation on the new National Minimum Wage bill, the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) has said that it is absurd to have two national minimum wages, explaining that what is obtainable in other places is one National Minimum Wage.
Over the weekend, the Director-General of NECA, Mr Timothy Olawale, said that what the Tripartite Committee on the National Minimum Wage submitted to the president upon conclusion of its assignment was a recommendation, and there was nothing in the National Economic Council (NEC) and the National Council of State examining it.
“It is alien and an aberration to have two national minimum wages. It is usually one national minimum wage and we hope this would be corrected by the National Assembly.”
NECA’s declaration came against the backdrop of approval of two separate minimum wage figures, including N30,000 for Federal workers and N27,000 for states and the private sector.
Meanwhile, the National Council of states has approved the N27,000 minimum wage, even though the members of the House of Representatives is against the figure because the initial amount reached by the Government, organised labour, and the private sector was N30,000.
The minimum amount NECA is recommending
Before speaking against the double National minimum wage figures, NECA had already welcomed the idea of N27,000 as the new minimum wage. In Olawale’s opinion, it would help lift the weight of the micro scale, little and medium scale companies in the nation.
“The figure recommended which is N3,000 less than the recommended figure by the Tripartite Committee comes with its own positives. The reduction will go a long way to lighten the burden of the micro, small and medium scale employers, which had been our concern hitherto. Granted too, that the exclusion threshold of 25 employees is expected to also take care of them.”
If put in a situation to choose between both figures, the Federal Government would probably go for N27,000 as the new minimum wage, because its lesser and save costs.