By Demola Akinyemi,Ilorin.
Chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, Kwara State Council, Alh Issa Ore has applauded Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq over the implementation of minimum wage as reflected in the civil servants who received payment alert on Monday, describing it as first of its kind in the state.
Alh Ore in an interview with Vanguard said the payment cuts across the local government’s workers, as agreed in the agreement the Labour leaders signed with the government.
He said,”Everyone is happy today because of this implementation of the 30,000 minimum wage by the governor. It’s the first of its kind in this state and we give glory to almighty God for it. This is something that also cut across the local governments in the state. The governor has really done well.”
The Labour Chairman however expressed reservation that the current economic hardship in the country had eaten deep into what would have been a complete joy for everyone.
“Looking at the time it was signed into law, and when we are now enjoying the minimum wage, you can agree with me that the economic hardship had taken away part of the benefits. “He said.
Issa Ore however expressed consolation that in a few years time, the Labour movement will propose another minimum wage.
He said, “Every five years we review minimum wage, so in few years time the Labour movement is duty-bound to propose another minimum wage.”
Public service workers were also jubilant across Kwara State on Monday as the state government fully implemented the minimum wage for all categories of its labour force, bolstering their purchasing power and rejuvenating the local economy.
Alerts of January salary triggered applause for Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq for the fulfilment of his promise to implement the consequential adjustment component of the minimum wage amid dwindling resources.
Acknowledging the gesture of the government, the secretary of the Joint Negotiating Council also said in a statement that the development is commendable and that the Governor deserves a pat on the back.
“The Kwara State Organised Labour under the auspices of TUC, NLC and the JNC wishes to use this medium to thank the Kwara State Government, under the leadership of His Excellency Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq our amiable, ebullient and dedicated Governor, for this noble achievement in this period of our economic and financial exigencies affecting all section of human endeavours.”
Secretary of the JNC Comrade Tunde Meshach Joseph said in the statement.
“On this note comrades, it is imperative to appreciate the Kwara State workers for your perseverance, loyalty, support and prayers through these years, we say thank you.
“To all the government representatives that had one way or the other participated at the negotiation processes, the labour leaders and the elder’s forum, we appreciate you all.”
Among many video footages of jubilant civil servants that have gone viral in the state, a school principal at Okelele Senior Secondary School Mr Albarika Akanbi said the gesture of the Governor was a first in the state and should be commended by all.
He directed his students to clap for the Governor as a result of his gesture to the civil servants in the state.
“I want you to clap for the Kwara State Governor, he has done very well for the civil servants in Kwara State. We need to appreciate him. It has never been good like this in Kwara State when a governor will promise and will fulfil it in a better way,” he said.
“When you get home tell your parents that I said they should clap for Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq. We don’t know what he wants to become but we pray God will grant his heart desires. We are not in a political rally but when somebody does something very good we need to appreciate it.”
He also commended the Governor for the various school renewal projects under his administration, saying it was unprecedented.