*L-R: Chairman Joint Negotiating Council (JNC) Comrade Saliu Suleiman; Permanent Secretary Service Welfare Afusat Afolabi; Chairman Trade Union Congress (TUC) Comrade Akinsola Akinwunmi; Kwara State Chairman Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) Comrade Issa Ore; Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq; Senator Yahaya Oloriegbe; Commissioner for Finance Olasumbo Oyeyemi; Director Established Pension and Industrial Relations Alhaji Yusuf Amuda; and Secretary JNC Comrade Joseph Tunde*
Kwara State Government on Friday inked the minimum wage agreement with the labour unions in the state, confirming that the payment for levels 1 to 6 had begun since February 2021.
The agreement holds that the consequential adjustment would be implemented “as would be agreed upon by the minimum wage committee” amid ongoing negotiations between the two parties.
The deal was inked for the Labour unions by members of their delegation led by NLC chairman Comrade Issa Ore while Permanent Secretary Service Welfare Alhaja Afusat Afolabi signed the agreement on behalf of the Head of Service/Chairman of the Government’s Minimum Wage Committee.
The brief signing ceremony was witnessed by Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq; Senator Ibrahim Yahya Oloriegbe; and other government officials, including Hon. Commissioner for Finance Florence Olasumbo Oyeyemi.
Other signatories are the chairman of the Public Service Joint Negotiating Council Comrade Saliu Suleiman; Secretary of the Public Service Joint Negotiating Council Comrade Joseph Tunde; and Director, Establishment, Pension and Industrial Relations/Secretary of the Government’s Minimum Wage Committee, Yusuf Ibrahim Amuda.
“The effective date for the 1st phase of the new minimum wage implementation covering grade level 01-06 shall be 1st day of February, 2021. The consequential adjustment of the new minimum wage for GL 07-17 shall be implemented by the State Government across board, in accordance to relevant salary structures in the state public service and their relativity as would be agreed upon by the Minimum Wage Committee,” according to the agreement.
“All due processes of promotion for workers in the state public service shall be concluded on or before their due dates and annual salary increment shall be implemented for workers as and when due in accordance to their condition of service. Pensions shall also be reviewed upward in the state based on the percentage agreed upon by the Minimum Wage Committee, when consequential adjustment is being considered.”
The agreement also said the implementation of PAYE shall be maintained in line with the existing tax law.
The Governor commended the Labour union for their understanding and said the government remains committed to the welfare of the people, including the civil servants who are the engine room of public service delivery.
Speaking on the sideline of the event, Oyeyemi said the signing of the minimum wage table already being implemented was a legal requirement and reiterated that the administration remains passionate about workers’ welfare.
“We just signed the minimum wage table and agreement for grade level 1 to 6. It involved both the labour and government sides. Negotiation is still ongoing regarding the consequential adjustment for the senior cadres. What is certain is we care for and want the best for the workers,” she said.
Issa Ore, for his part, said he had the mandate of the workers to conclude work on the signing of the new minimum wage for the junior cadres, saying negotiation is still ongoing on the consequential adjustment component.
“Today, we were able to sign that leg of the minimum wage agreement which affects only grade level 1 to 6. You know there are two legs under it: the new minimum wage and the consequential adjustment. That of the consequential adjustment is still going on. The Labour side and government side will continue the negotiation. And I am happy to inform you that we have the mandate of the workers to come here for the signing which has now become a law today,” he said.