Tinubu’s Govt Should Review Minimum Wage – Chris Ngige

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The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, has called on the incoming administration of President-Elect Bola Tinubu to immediately commence discussions on the review of the minimum wage in Nigeria after its inauguration in May.

Tinubu's Govt Should Review Minimum Wage - Chris Ngige
Chris Ngige

Ngige made this known during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme on Wednesday.

Ngige further stated that the new minimum wage should be higher than the current rate of N30,000 and should be implemented by May 2024.

He added that the outgoing administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had approved a pay raise for hardcore civil servants, which would take effect from January 1, 2023.

The minister noted that the pay raise was necessary to cushion the effects of inflation, and increased cost of living, transportation, housing, electricity, and other utilities.

Ngige was a member of the committee that negotiated a new minimum wage in 2018, which was implemented in 2019 after more than a year of negotiations. He believes that the minimum wage in Nigeria should be reviewed every five years to align with the current standard of living.

“It is a tripartite negotiation involving the public sector, private sector and state governments,” he said, adding that the minimum wage that went to the National Assembly then saw an increase from N18,000 to N30,000 though many states are yet to implement it.

Ngige said, “We entrenched in that bill or law that minimum wage will now have an automaticity of review every five years.

“So, from 2019 when it came into effect 2024 will be five years but we also made a recommendation in our document which we submitted that the discussion, of the negotiation, should start one year from May 2024 when it is supposed to kick-start.

“So, I’m envisaging that as of May 2023, the government will empanel the new minimum wage review committee for the nation.

“In my handover note which I am going to hand over to the transition committee and the next government, I am recommending that the discussions start anytime from May 2023.”

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