Festus Keyamo, the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, says the last-minute move by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to introduce a pay rise for the 144,766 federal civil servants under the Consolidated Public Service Salary Structure (CONPSS) is something the government can afford.
Information Nigeria reports that there have been criticisms following the announcement of the peculiar allowance for civil servants.
Some finance experts described the introduction of the allowance as a “trap for the incoming administration.”
However Keyamo in a chat with Punch on Saturday said the move cannot be described as unreasonable.
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“The new package for workers cannot be unreasonable under our present circumstances. In fact, Nigerian workers deserve more. The issue is the funding. I think when the new government removes subsidy and explores some others means to fund our budgets, the government can afford it.”
Meanwhile, workers under the CONPSS were paid peculiar allowances alongside their salaries for the month of April with arrears of January to March 2023 paid alongside.
The Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige had also earlier explained that the government introduced the allowance for civil servants in view of the current economic reality.
According to Ngige, it is meant to help government workers to cushion the effects of rising inflation, the rising cost of living, hikes in transportation fare, housing and electricity tariffs.