Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
Governor Wille Obiano of Anambra has promised that the state would exceed others in the implementation of the new N30, 0000 minimum wage for workers.
The governor who stated this at the seventh quadrennial state delegates conference of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) in Awka, recalled that he was the first to make commitment on the payment of the new minimum wage, adding that once the grey areas were sorted out, workers in the state would be happy.
Obiano who was represented by Head of Service, Mr. Harry Udu, observed that the state government and the organised labour were in partnership for the good of the state, particularly on the issue of minimum wage.
“At the time negotiations were going on at the national level, Obiano was busy making calculations on how the state would implement it and at the appropriate time after meeting with the organised labour, expectations of Anambra workers may even be surpassed. Governor Obiano also took the proactive step of including the minimum wage in this year’s budget, which was why the overhead provision is high in the budget recently passed by the House of Assembly.”
Udu said the governor had already made provisions for smooth Christmas by giving every worker a bag of rice, while the December salary would be paid on the 15th.
The outgoing president of NULGE, Chief Jerry Nnubia, while commending the state government for being worker- friendly, however, observed that the contributory pension scheme as being operated in the state was against the spirit and letters of the law establishing it and demanded that it should be scrapped and all deductions made in that regard refunded to workers from whose salaries they were deducted.
Nnubia, who is chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) also complained about salary disparity between local government staff and other workers in the state civil service, urging government to harmonise it without further delay.