The Delta State Government has made good its promise by signing the new minimum wage, yesterday in Asaba, with effect from November 1, last year. The new wage increment would cost the state over N700m monthly and the pact ensures that the two months arrears of November and December last year would be paid instalmentally alongside January and February salaries.
In Cross River State, Governor Ben Ayade has inaugurated the state public service negotiating committee for the implementation of the new wage.The inauguration took place yesterday at the Deputy Governor’s Conference Room, Governor’s Office in Calabar, the state capital.
Secretary to Delta State Government (SSG), Mr. Chiedu Ebie, who is the Chairman of the Implementation Committee, at a meeting with the leadership of organised Labour in the state, commended workers in the state for their maturity. Ebie, who signed on behalf of the state government, stated that the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa’s administration was committed to the welfare of workers in the state.
Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in the state, Mr. Goodluck Ofobruku, and the state Chairman of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Mr. Martin Bolum, who signed on behalf of workers, thanked Okowa for agreeing to pay the new wage. At the inauguration of the implementation committer in Calabar, Ayade, who was represented by his Deputy, Prof. Ivara Esu, said: “We are only here to negotiate the consequential adjustments that will affect salaries from Grade levels 7 to 17. In doing that, we carefully selected this team of technocrats and strong labour people, not just from the state civil service, but also from the local government for the negotiations.“In carrying out this negotiations, you must ensure that you think about the purse of the state as in the entire South-South zone, Cross River is the only state that does not get a penny as extra revenue coming from oil.
“Do not negotiate what will cause us to start owing salaries or make workers clap for you that you worked so hard and at the end of the day, we are not able to pay or we begin to wait for two or three months in order to put money together to pay one month.”
The governor, however said the commissioner For finance, state Accountant General and the Auditor General would be members of the team, “to show you our books, so that you see exactly what we have. You don’t negotiate from the air.”The team’s terms of reference include determining the effective date for the implementation of the new wage, determining and recommending any other issue incidental to the implementation of the N30, 000 minimum wage. The committee is to present its report on or before January 31, this year.