The Lagos State Government Thursday dismissed the allegation of non-implementation of the National Minimum Wage policy in the State as a display of ignorance by the opposition asserting that Lagos was the first to implement the policy among the 36 states of the Federation.
The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State, Mr. Jimi Agbaje, was quoted recently in some national dailies as alleging that the Lagos State Government was yet to implement the National Minimum Wage policy of the Federal Government.
But a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Aderemi Ibirogba, described the allegation as another display of bold ignorance by the PDP Governorship Candidate, explaining that the issue of minimum wage was settled on Tuesday, February 7, 2011, when the State Government signed an agreement with the 14 approved labour unions in the State Civil Service to pay N18,780 to the lowest paid of its workers.
The agreement, brokered by the then Commissioner for Establishment and Training, Mr. Jide Sanwoolu, the Statement said, increased the minimum wage of the lowest paid worker in the employment of the government by 69.6 percent which is a 7.6 percent increase over the Federal Government approved National Minimum Wage.
The Statement quoted the Chairman of the Joint Negotiating Council (JNC) of the approved labour unions, Comrade Henry Akinwunmiju, as thanking the State Government “for its magnanimity in not only meeting the workers’ demands but going beyond to give more than the Federal Government”.
It also quoted the Chairman of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), which was part of the negotiating team, Comrade Akeem Kazeem, as also thanking the State Government “for the understanding it has shown concerning the workers’ demands” adding that “what has happened in Lagos State as regards the negotiations was worthy of emulation by other states of the Federation”.
The Statement enjoined the PDP Governorship Candidate to always endeavour to verify his “facts” before going public adding that doing so would save him the continued public display of ignorance of the working of the very government he is striving to head.