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Governors not paying N30,000 minimum wage are breaking the law —Ngige



The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, has issued a scathing critique of Governors who are yet to implement the new national minimum wage.

Ngige made this assertion during a guest appearance on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, while stating that any employer paying its employee below N30,000 was doing so in contravention of the law.

“If you read the Act well, you will see the applicability of the Act. The applicability is that all parts of the Federation (Section II); Section III also says N30,000 shall be paid, the operating word is shall.

“It does not give room for picking and choosing, it is a must. The state governors that are not paying are breaching the law of the land,” the minister said.

Ripples Nigeria had reported that President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Minimum Wage Repeal and Re-Enactment Act, 2019 into law on April 18, 2019.

As a result of this amendment, it is compulsory for all employers in Nigeria to pay a minimum of N30,000 to their workers.

This Act also grants workers compelled to accept salary less than the amount the right to sue their employer to recover the balance.

READ ALSO: FG says transfer of minimum wage to concurrent list won’t work, asks states to comply

However, some states are yet to adhere to the mandates of this Act.

Ngige faulted governors negotiating with the labour unions in their states over the payment of the minimum wage to workers.

According to him, they are getting the issues mixed up as the minimum wage is different from the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).

“This is a national law that states what you will pay to the lowest-paid employee (worker) in your establishment; state governments are employers… they are caught in the web of this law until repealed.

“Any state government or employer that negotiates minimum wage like some of them are doing with their unions, they are running afoul of the law,” the minister stated.

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