Tinubu gives Finance Minister 48 hours to present cost implications

Tinubu receives cost implications from govt negotiation team

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President Bola Tinubu on Thursday morning received the cost Implications of an affordable, sustainable and realistic new minimum wage.

Minister of Finance and coordinating minister for the economy, Wale Edun and his budget and national planning, Atiku Bagudu made the presentation to him in his office at the presidential villa in Abuja.

It followed the directive given by the president on Tuesday that the government team in the tripartite committee should ensure that the proposals reached him within 48 hours.

Edun confirmed the submission and assured that “there is no cause for alarm” when asked about the figure.

Recall that the minister of information and national orientation, Mohammed Idris, had disclosed the president’s ultimatum in an interview with correspondents on Tuesday.

Emerging from a meeting of the president with the government team on the tripartite committee on the new minimum wage, Idris had stated: “The president has just summoned a meeting of all those who negotiated on behalf of the federal government led by the secretary to the government of the federation, the minister of finance was there the minister of budget planning, the minister of information, the minister of budget and national planning, the minister of labour and the NNPCL GMD.

“We were all there to look at all issues and the president has directed the minister of finance to do the numbers and get back to him between today and tomorrow so that we can have figures ready for negotiation with labour.”

Idris had also assured of the president’s readiness to accept the committee’s resolutions with the Labour in line with his commitment to the welfare of Nigerians.

He explained that the federal government is keen to ensure a balance of its commitments with the economic realities of the country.

The government’s spokesman added: “And let me say that the president is determined to go with what the committee has said and he’s also looking at the welfare of Nigerians.

“Government is not against or opponent of labour discussions, the government is not an opponent of wage increase but what is there is that government is always there to ensure that there is a balance between what government pronouncement is and what the realities are on ground.

“And therefore, we will work assiduously to ensure that whatever promises the government makes is a promise that will be kept that is the idea of this meeting.”

Furthermore, he said President Tinubu has directed the government representatives to work with the organised private sector and the sub-nationals to achieve a new affordable and sustainable wage award for Nigerians.

Idris explained: “The President has given a matching order that all those who have negotiated on behalf of the federal government and all those who are representatives of organised private sectors, the sub nationals to come together to have a new wage award that is affordable, sustainable and that is also realistic for Nigerians.

“The wage award is not just that of the federal government like I mentioned earlier, the sub-nationals are involved, the organised private sector is involved; it was labour that stepped out during that procedure. Now we have come back to the negotiation table.”

The minister assured that all parties to the negotiation of the new minimum wage will cooperate with organised labour to present a new minimum wage for Nigerians in one week, noting: “All of us will work together assiduously within the next one week to ensure that we have a new wage for Nigeria that is acceptable, sustainable and also realistic.”

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