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New Minimum Wage Will Cost FG N580 Billion Annually

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Strike

The federal government will cough out N580 billion annually if it hopes to meet up with the new minimum wage.

This much was revealedr by the Minister  of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige.

Speaking on Thursday, October 3rd, Ngige said that the demand of labour over the implementation of the new minimum wage would cost the Federal Government N580 billion annually.

He said that such adjustment, in line with labour’s demand, was not sustainable as the government would have to lay off some workers to be able to meet their demands. The minister said government cannot afford that kind of money now, adding that the focus of President Buhari’s government is on workers on grade level 1 step 1 and level 6 step 1 where the impact of the wage would be felt by workers.

The Minister spoke in Abuja when the leadership of United Labour Congress (ULC) led by its President, Joe Ajeiro, paid him a courtesy at the ministry.

Urging workers to show more understanding to the plight of the federal government, Ngige said the current economic realities, may make the new wage bill not feasible. He said that the government was avoiding a situation where it would have to lay off workers, adding that this would add to the burden of the citizenry.

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Ngige appealed to the labour to accept the consequential adjustment from levels 7 to 17, adding that the federal government had only three months left to implement the new minimum wage.

His words: “There is no problem with disagreement in the labour system, when can sometimes disagree to later agree, on the national minimum wage, it will translate to an additional N580billion if government agrees to the consequential adjustment labour is proposing.

“Government cannot afford that kind of money now, besides the administration of President Buhari is more interested in the lowest cadre of workers which are those on grade level 1 step 1 and level 6 step 1, these are the ones who the N30,000 will have greater impact on.

“Government has done their own homework and brought out what they can use to defend this consequential adjustment. Grade 1 to 6 does not have any problem, but 7 to 14 band and 15 to 17 band this is where we have the problem. Once you finish a minimum wage and go into consequential adjustment you are trying to reach a collective bargaining agreement and once you are trying to reach and once you are the principle of ability to pay comes in.

“So if you push government to go and accede to an increment which its resources cannot accommodate, you are indirectly asking them to retrench workers so that the few that are remaining will get this big big money.

“We don’t want that, from 2015 the president has made it clear that he is not out to inflict pains on Nigerians and that he does not want to create unemployment but even at that our increase in population is galloping and our resources is not consequentialy increasing to meet up that is why we have a lot of unemployed youths on the street today.

“We need to arrive at an agreement as soon as possible so that we can use the 2019 budget allocation to deframe this consequential adjustment because it will be bad if we are unable to do it and we finish this financial year by December because the budget circle is going to return to January/December 2020 so we we have three months only before this recurrent funds as well are swept back into government treasury, that is the law.”

The organised labour has started mobilising their members to embark on strike on the 16th of this month

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Force Provost Marshal Sacks Officers From Barracks

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Officers

The Force Provost Marshal has sacked Police officers living in Traffic Training School Barracks, Ikeja, Lagos.

This follows a memo dated February 24, 2020, asking them to evacuate in about a month’s time.

Police officers and their families risk homelessness as they have been ordered to evacuate the barracks

The memo issued by the Force Provost Marshal and signed by an Assistant Commissioner of Police, Ajewole Adebayo stated that they will be forcefully evicted if they do not leave on March 31.

“You are by this letter directed to quit the Staff Quarters and Hostels of the Traffic Training School, Ikeja –an advance Traffic wing of Police College, Ikeja, not later than March 31, 2020.

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“You should note that your staying on the premises is illegal. If you fail to vacate the premises before the said date, you will be forcibly ejected and further disciplinary action will follow,” the momo read.

 

Meanwhile, affected officers have revealed that the apartments were duly allocated to them contrary to the provost’s claim.

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According to them, they were not given genuine reasons for the imminent ejection. The situation is set to

render the officers and their families homeless, as they have revealed that they have nowhere to go with their families in such a short time.

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SANWO-OLU CONGRATULATES ASIWAJU AT 68

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Asiwaju

Lagos State Governor Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has congratulated the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu on his 68th birthday.

Sanwo-Olu in a message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Gboyega Akosile, described the former governor of Lagos State as, a pathfinder, a visionary leader and rare mentor, who has contributed in no small measure to the socio-political and economic development of Lagos and Nigeria as a whole.

In his word, Governor Sanwo-Olu said, ‘‘what do you say about a man of many parts on the occasion of his birthday? A visionary, a leader, with exceptional abilities in different areas of human endeavours. Indeed his achievements are almost impossible to capture in a single book, not to say in  a mere statement.

‘‘Asiwaju as pathfinder, navigated and charted the developmental course of modern Lagos, raised the bar of governance and public service in the State.’’

The statement further described Asiwaju as ‘‘welfarist, a cheerful giver and an epitome of humility and humanity.

‘‘Asiwaju’s strength lies in his firm belief in a united and indivisible Nigeria that is devoid of religious and ethnic bigotry. This has enabled him to provide the right leadership, made the right decision in the overall interest of the country most of  time.’’

Describing the Jagarban Borgu as an astute politician, Sanwo-Olu said, ‘‘it is no news to the world that the story of Nigeria’s democracy today would be told without Asiwaju’s name boldly written in gold.’’

He wished Nigeria’s political leader a birthday full of joy, even as the country and the rest of the world battle the ravaging COVID-19.

He said: ‘‘as you march on to higher pedestal in life, may the Amighty go with you every step of the way and support you to accomplish more in the service of humanity’’.

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COVID-19: SANWO-OLU OPENS FOOD MARKETS ACROSS LAGOS, SAYS GOVT MAY TAKE TOUGHER MEASURES

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Market

…Governor Signs Infectious Diseases Regulation 2020 Into Law To Legalise Restrictions

Lagos State Government, on Friday, opened 50 neighbourhood food markets across the State to serve as makeshift groceries for residents to buy food items, as confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) increases the chance of possible stringent measures.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in a briefing on Friday, disclosed that the initiative was necessary, hinting that the State Government may take “tougher decisions” if the confirmed cases of coronavirus surpass the threshold set by the State.

Sanwo-Olu said that there had been a “strange trend” recorded by the State in its response to the viral epidemic, hinting that some of the new infections showed Lagos may be entering a phase of community transmission of the disease.

The establishment of the neighbourhood food markets was a follow-up to the creation of 10 food banks strategically positioned across the State, which is targeted at feeding over 200,000 vulnerable households that earn daily wage to feed.

He said: “We have started to see a trend that suggests we may be entering the phase of community transmission of the disease. I’m response to this, we are formally launching our Neighborhood Markets scheme. We have 50 large public-school premises across the State that can accommodate temporary open markets where we will have essential food items and household items available for sale at affordable rates.

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“These Neighborhood Markets will operate every two days, and will help achieve a number of goals that are all in line with the guidelines of the health authorities. The markets will reduce journey times for the residents. By extension, it reduce the time people will spend in public and will also help to maintain social distancing requirements.”

The Governor also signed the Lagos State Infectious Diseases Regulation 2020 into law to give legal backing to the ongoing enforcement of restrictive measures being taken by the State Government to contain the spread of the virus.

The regulation, Sanwo-Olu said, prescribes stringent penalties to defaulters of directives and guidelines issued by the Government to stop community transmission of COVID-19.

As cases of COVID-19 surges, Sanwo-Olu said he would not rule out possible lockdown of the State in the coming days, urging the residents to brace for tougher measures. The Governor, however, said the treatment and management of the confirmed cases at Infectious Disease Hospital (IDH) had not overwhelmed the State.

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Going by the nature of spread of the virus in other countries, the Governor said every human was at risk of contracting the disease, stressing that the response strategy to defeat the pandemic required collective effort and cooperation of residents.

“I have said again and again that this fight is a collective one; we are all in it together,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu praised President Muhammadu Buhari for his leadership and support of the effort by Lagos Government to stop the epidemic. He said the release of N10 billion grant to the State was a recognition of Lagos as epicentre of COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

He also appreciated the contributions of members of the organised private sector that supported the State’s effort by donation of cash, medical equipment and building of isolation centres.

The Governor said efforts were ongoing to halt community transmission, revealing that agents of the Government had already started state-wide fumigation. This, he said, would be followed up by mass sensitisation and advocacy to disseminate information to residents at the grassroots.

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