The implementation of the N30,000 new minimum wage in Ondo State will cost the government N45 billion monthly. This represents a 20 percent increase in the current wage bill which stands at about N36 billion.
Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Pastor Emmanuel Igbasan, disclosed this in an interview with The Hope, the state-owned newspaper.
He said: “The minimum wage which our workers rightly deserve will increase our wage burden between 18 and 20 percent on monthly basis when implemented”. According to him, the state government will need additional N9 billion to meet up with the payment annually.
Igbasan, however called for the review of the present revenue sharing formula that will give more money to the state and local governments, saying development comes from the grassroots.
He said in a situation where the federal government gets 52 percent of the revenue from the federation account is unfair, calling on the federal government to see the need for the review of the sharing formula in favour of state and local governments.
“I have said it at different for a that for state governments to be able to conveniently pay the new minimum wage without downsizing, right sizing or owing workers’ salaries, something needs to be done to the revenue sharing formula.
There are so many things that the federal government has taken upon itself which are not effective because it is not within its purview to do so. The Federal government should give out part of what it has now. The kind of structure we have is too centralized and most of these health facilities are domesticated at the grassroots level. They should give more power to the state and local governments to handle what are domiciled within their territories.”
Igbasan observed that it is even difficult for federal government to implement the N30,000 minimum wage despite its huge share in the revenue from the federation account.
The commissioner put the total number of civil servants in the state, including that of local governments at 72,985 and pensioners at 22, 253.
He indicated the possibility of an increase in the number of workers in the state as a result of the newly-recruited workers in the health and other sectors and assured that as soon as the coast is clear, workers in the state will enjoy the new minimum wage.
He affirmed that the State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu will not downsize the workforce but create an efficient workforce that will drive productivity and efficient administration. “He is a governor that I know very well, he has said it several times that he is not interested in sending anybody packing before his retirement age. You can even see the demonstration of that in all MDAs that were allowed to complete their terms before they were disengaged.”
On the recently approved N50bn bond, Igbasan said the process is ongoing as the state is yet to receive it, adding that it will be utilized before the end of the year to accelerate massive infrastructural development across the state.
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