The Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU) has described by the Federal Government to slash salaries of Federal civil servants as “provocative’’.
NASU made this known in a statement by its General Secretary, Mr Peters Adeyemi on Sunday in Abuja.
Ripples Nigeria had reported that Mrs Zainab Ahmed, the Minister of Finance, intimated about a potential salary reduction on May 4.
This was at the National Policy Dialogue on Corruption and Cost of Governance in Nigeria, organised by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) in Abuja.
Ahmed said during the dialogue that the review of salaries of civil servants and some federal agencies was part of measures to reduce the cost of governance.
She said the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC) had been directed to review salaries of civil servants and some federal agencies.
However, Adeyemi said the union conceded that President Muhammadu Buhari had refused to yield to the pressure from some individuals in his administration, who continued to urge him to retrench workers.
”We also note that his administration continues to pay salaries regularly. To us in NASU, these are among the actions of this government that are commendable.
”There is, however, no other way of looking at the current decision of the Federal Government other than a victory for those in the administration, who continue to be insensitive to the plight of Nigerian workers.
”Unfortunately, rather than leaving workers to remain in their current state of want, they have decided to provoke and incite them against the same government they are working for.
“No government official who wishes Nigerian workers well and is interested in the peace of the country will advise on this line of policy direction at this time, when workers are still struggling with the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
He said that the misinformation by some political office holders to the uninformed public was that government was spending a huge sum of its revenue on civil servants’ salaries and wages.
”If government is sincerely interested in reducing the cost of governance, it should be bold and sincere enough to throw the search light at political office holders and members of the legislative arm of government.
”We plead with President Buhari to have a rethink of this policy direction of his government at a time when for the same economic reasons, a country like the U. S. is considering raising her minimum pay to 15 dollars an hour.
”To continue on this line of policy will only provoke Nigerian workers and incite them toward negative actions that may lead to unintended outcomes,” Adeyemi said.
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