Workers’ Day: Obaseki Urges Workers To Delve Into Agriculture, Increases Minimum Wage To N40,000

Rita Enemuru, Reporting

Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki, has urged workers in the state to venture into agriculture so as to increase food production, just as he announced the a new minimum wage of N40,000.

Obeseki made the declaration while delivering his 2022 Workers’ Day speech to commemorate the Workers’ Day Celebration in Benin, Edo State.

According to him, the government is prepared to make sacrifices so that workers can live better lives hence the increase from N30,000 to N40,000.

Governor Obaseki acknowledged the hardship in Nigeria, urging civil servants to take advantages offered by his administration in the agricultural sector to increase food production in the country.

“As we all know, the minimum of N30,000 can barely sustain a family. It will be immoral and mindless of us to continue to pretend that we do not know that our workers are suffering,” he said.

“The government of Edo has now decided to review the minimum for Edo workers from N30,000 to N40,000 a month. Undoubtedly, Edo is the first state since the current outbreak of coronavirus to take this initiative.

“Even though we would have loved to pay more, we hope that this little adjustment would enable us to cushion the impact of the inflation that we are faced with. There is no doubt that the financial implications will be heavy and put another burden on the government.

“But as a government, we are prepared to make the sacrifices so that the workers can live a better life. Your welfare is our number one priority,” Obaseki said.

While lamenting the hardship experienced by pensioners because of the hike in price of food and other items, Obaseki reassures his government’s relentless support to senior citizens in the state.

“I am particularly interested in our senior citizens because they are one of the most vulnerable in our society. We took interest in payments of outstanding pensions to our pensioners although these pensions were held by the previous administration.

“In view of the prevailing economic circumstances, I have now approved, effective this May, the agreement we reached with the Union of Pensioners that the harmonized amount would be paid from May 2022.

“Government is aware of the difficulties faced by the pensioners due to the non-payment of pension and gratuities to pensioners by previous governments. This responsibility is huge, and it will require a substantial part of our resources to settle them.

“However, we are not a government that is known for running away from challenges; we will look for a way to tackle these challenges,” the governor added.

Earlier in his address, the state Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Mr. Odion Olaye, charged the Federal Government to step up efforts to tackle the high rate of insecurity, unemployment, and hunger in the country.

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