Nigeria’s Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, has revealed plans by the federal government to review the wages of political office holders in the country including governors.
He made the revelation in Abuja on Tuesday when he hosted members of the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) during a visit to his office, Guardian reports.
The Minister noted that another holistic wage review is in the pipeline after the last one which happened in 2011.
Ngige questioned what a governor is doing with hazard and constituency allowances noting that all such items will be reviewed.
“What is a governor doing with hazard allowance? What hazard when the state is feeding him and his family? What is a governor doing with constituency allowance? The whole state is his constituency.
“These are what will be holistically reviewed,” he questioned.
Highlighting the need to review and streamline excessive wages been earned by certain public and political office holders, Ngige revealed the President had already set up a committee to work on the review.
The minister said the “government has put up the Presidential Committee on Salaries headed by the Minister of Finance and co-chaired by me” to review the wages and allowances.
He said the committee will evaluate the wage structure of the public service current ‘consequential adjustment’ being carried out on the N30,000 minimum wage for Nigerian workers.
“There are people who earn 300 percent of what others earn and they have the same degree.
We may have people in NNPC, FIRS, Customs and others with third-class (degrees) earning 300 percent more than the man with first-class in the ministry.”
“Revenue Mobilisation will also look at what is given to political officeholders.
In his reaction, NULGE president Ibrahim Khaleel appealed to the government to address the issue of the non-involvement of the union members in any of Nigeria’s standing minimum wage negotiating councils.
“If NULGE cannot be made a member of any of the negotiating councils, another council should be created for the local government employees as recommended.”
“We believe we are having a lot of gaps in terms of our role of engagement with the government and our employers and this is very good machinery that we are praying and agitating that we will get it under your leadership,” he said