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Ortom, Ayade pledge to pay N30,000

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Governor of Benue State Samuel Ortom


Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has said that if given the capacity, he would even pay the state workers above N30,000 as minimum wage. Ortom stated this yesterday in Makurdi while addressing members of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) who protested at the gate of the Government House, Makurdi.

The governor said he sympathised with the workers over their plight, stating that the N18,000 minimum wage was no longer enough as prices of things had skyrocketed.

“If I have the capacity, I will not hesitate to implement the new minimum wage even above N30,000,” he said.He said that himself, alongside some other governors, had appealed to the Federal Government to review the revenue sharing formula to enable them pay the proposed N30,000 minimum wage.

However, the President of NLC, Ayuba Wabba, represented by National Auditor of the union, Dr. Success Leke, urged Ortom to prevail on his colleagues to implement the new minimum wage.

In the same vein, Cross River State Governor Ben Ayade said his administration would pay the N30,000 minimum wage. Ayade said this yesterday at the Government House in Calabar while addressing workers who embarked on a statewide protest to call for the implementation of the new minimum wage law in the country.

The governor, represented by the state Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, John Ulafor, said the new minimum wage is not far away from what government could afford to pay workers, noting that the state government would do all in its power to ensure that the Federal Government implements it.

The state Chairman of the NLC, John Ushie, while addressing newsmen earlier, said the new wage had been due for review since 2015 but government had refused to do it. In another development, Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode yesterday ignored organised labour at the State House to attend to the party’s campaign rally for the incoming governorship candidate, Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Security operatives barricaded the entrance into the state’s assembly ground where labour unions in their mammoth crowd sought the presence of the governor to present to him a letter from organised labour, committing him to the speedy implementation of the new national minimum wage of N30,000 when enacted into law.

The Lagos workers, who began protest as early as 7.00 a.m., carrying placards and chanting solidarity songs, vented their anger at the governor for not giving them audience, and the manner at which they were prevented entrance to the Government House by security operatives.

Vice President of the NLC, Solomon Adelagun, said the governor had sent a wrong signal that he does not have the interest of workers at heart.He described the act as injustice to the plight of workers who had been clamouring for an increased wage since 2017, only for him to ignore them to attend to the party’s campaign rally.

But Special Adviser to the Governor on Civic Engagement, Yemi Olabinjo, who claimed to be a representative of the governor, said nobody barricaded Labour from using the Assembly’s podium to address the public. He said the state did not receive prior notice that Labour would come to the State House, adding that the governor would have waited to receive them and that Lagos State “is ready to pay any amount agreed by that Federal Government.”


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