By George Odok
Mr Hilary Bisong, a member of the Cross River House of Assembly, has urged the Federal Government to immediately implement the new minimum wage for all cadres of workers in the country.
Bisong, who represents Boki 11 at the House disclosed this while speaking in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) on Tuesday in Calabar as Nigeria mark its 59th Independence.
He said the implementation was long over due.
He lamented the fact that in spite of the meetings held with the federal government and the Joint National Public Service Negotiating Council, a percentage for implementation was yet to be agreed on.
He explained that with the rising cost of goods and services in the country, the federal government should not drag foot with the organised labour on the consequential adjustment.
According to him, the federal government should urgently implement the new wage in order to avoid running into industrial crisis with labour over backlog of arrears.
“We all understand that the new minimum wage bill was signed into law on April 18, by President Muhammadu Buhari. The President stated that the bill took effect from the date of signing.
“Regrettably, we are in the sixth month now since the bill was signed. We keep hearing of meetings upon meetings and setting up of various committees.
“I am calling on the federal government to be sincere and committed to the welfare of Nigerian workers. Civil servants deserves a new pay increase because prices of almost all items in the markets are on the increase,” he said.
He added:“If the consequential adjustment is not agreed early enough, some states may not have the finance to pay the arrears and this might lead to crisis.
“You cannot approve payment for grade levels 1-6 without including grade levels 7-17 accordingly. We can only say that the minimum wage has been implemented when all cadres of workers get their new salaries.”
He also called on governments at all levels to create jobs for youths.(NAN)