Fayemi explains why all states can’t pay same minimum wage

Former governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, has reiterated the need for decentralised minimum wage negotiations.

Fayemi also emphasised the importance of allowing states to conduct their own wage negotiations with labour unions, separate from the federal government.

Fayemi, who is a former chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF), stated this during an interview on ChannelsTV’s Politics Today, which aired on Friday night.

Fayemi said: “The position of the Nigerian Governors Forum when I was chairman of the forum, and I believe even till this recent negotiation, is that we should decentralise minimum wage negotiations and allow states to have their negotiations with their labour unions, while the federal government conducts its own negotiation, because the circumstances are not equal.”

Highlighting the disparity in resources accruing to states, Fayemi said, “The governor of Lagos State should not be earning the same salary as the governor of Ekiti State. He has more resources, but we all go by rank. And, the N600,000 that I earned in Ekiti is what governor Sanwo-Olu earns in Lagos.

“I don’t believe that we’re being realistic. This should be decentralised.

“Labour doesn’t want to hear anything about decentralized national minimum wage, and decentralized national minimum wage does not mean that what is paid at the state level will be lower than federal. In the 60s and 50s, civil servants in the western region used to earn more than federal civil servants,” he said.

The federal government and labour unions in the country have been at loggerheads over the new national minimum wage for workers.

The federal government had proposed the sum of N62,000 while the organised labour is insisting on N250,000 as the new minimum wage.

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