The National Salaries Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC) has begun to review the National Minimum Wage despite a warning against the move by the budget office.
According to the commission’s Head of Public Affairs, Emmanuel Njoku, in a statement on Sunday, 15 January 2023, in Abuja, the process has been initiated.
Njoku revealed that the review will be implemented in 2024, under a new administration, but from January 23, stakeholders selected from various government agencies will monitor the review process that covers the Minimum Wage Act 2019.
Several meetings have been held as regards the move to review salaries and ensure public and private sectors comply with the final decisions.
“The exercise will enlighten the public and private employers and organisations on the economic benefits in adhering to the payment of the National Minimum Wage.
“It will also help in obtaining baseline data on remuneration policies and practices of private sector organisations in order to enrich the commission’s data bank on staff compensation.
“The monitoring exercise will cover the 36 states of the federation including the Federal Capital Territory,” Njoku said.
Budget office DG against salary increase
Prime Business Africa had reported that the Director General of the Budget Office of the Federation, Ben Akabueze, had cautioned against salary increments last year.
Akabueze said the government’s debt is too high, coupled with the burden of fuel subsidy, to increase wages when FG should be seeking ways to reduce it.
He advocated for salary increments to be halted and for fuel subsidy to be removed to increase the government’s available capital for projects.
The budget office boss had stated: “To address this challenge and to relieve the concern on the rising debt and debt service, it is important to ensure that public debt is sustainable and for this to be, urgent decisive measures are required to avert public debt crisis and these steps are critically around enhancing revenue and then improving expenditure and blocking leakages.”
“The critical steps include the implementation of the relevant recommendations and discontinuation of the PMS subsidy by the end of June next year as announced or earlier date.
“Suspension of new salary increases for government agencies and addressing the issues of pipeline vandalism and reducing oil theft through the reintegration of the war against pipeline vandalism and oil theft by security agencies,” Akabueze added.
Despite his assertion, Njoku said the government will be going ahead with the salary review, and Akabueze, as head of the budget office, will be among the stakeholders that will monitor the process.
Also listed among the monitoring team are the Ministry of Labour and Employment, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, the Heads of Budget Office of the Federation, the Service of the Federation, the National Bureau of Statistics, and the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation.
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