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Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Minimum Wage Issue Is At The Heart Of Poverty; Enough Of This Equality And Equity Nonsense, Its Killing Us- Ali Baba

Ali Baba, veteran stand-up comedian and actor, says minimum wage saga and revenue sharing formula is the cause of poverty and low productivity in the country.
According to the Delta-born comedian, some states are spending what they don’t earn while others are living off the resources of oil-producing states and lacking productivity themselves.
“You see the matter of minimum wage is at the very heart of our poverty and our lack of productivity in this country,” he said.
“There are certain states that cannot sustain themselves, but still have a civil service overhead that equals that of a relatively financially buoyant state.”
Ali Baba explained that the country is approaching its financial problems the wrong way by making low-earning states pay a minimum wage of N30, 000, irrespective of their internally generated revenue (IGR).
“Take states like Gombe, Jigawa, Taraba, Kebbi…How much do they generate as IGR? Can these states, even in the south, pay N30, 000 as minimum wage?” he said.
“But when all the workers across the country are shouting solidarity forever, they too will join. Even states that owe 16 months are now going to pay 30k.
“You see, that is exactly what our problem is in Nigeria as a country.”
While noting that extravagance and misplaced priorities on the part of many governors have worsened the problem, Ali Baba argued that forcing these states to measure up would only make things difficult.
“A state governor that has no IGR that can sustain his state’s civil service salaries will be driving around in bulletproof vehicles that can sort the salaries of some state ministries for 6 months, ” he said.
“Now we want to make things more difficult for those states that are struggling to pay 18k. If they couldn’t pay 18k, how would they pay 30k?
“Agreed, some of the governors are living large at the expense of oil-producing states. There are some who should not be given anything sef.
“Justice is when that sharing formula is removed. You only spend what your state can produce. Enough of this equality and equity nonsense, its killing us.”

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