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On the Promise of N60,000 or N100,000 as minimum wage for Lagos State workers

It is a hare-brain promise.


As of 2017, Lagos workforce was 100,433 (published – see link below).

If the least paid is recieving N100,000 as this guy targets, the baseline salary before gradation to capture mid-career and top-heavy public officers would be over N10billion. By the time you factor the mid and top heavy payments, it would morph by at least a factor of 6 or 7 to circa N60 billion per month or higher. Those in the public service for instance know that once you are on Level 15 or thereabout, an additional salary for the least paid is normally added to your overall take home.

The implication of this infantile promise of salary increase by one of the candidates is that Lagos State would henceforth only use its IGR to settle wages.

This is beside the fact that Lagos’ cumulative monthly receipt is actually IGR + Federal Allocation – Debts (less debts).

I have argued publicly and privately that the bait of salary increase as a definitive  development agenda is epic laziness. This is the same problem I had with selective and non-systemic  micro-economic interventions of the last two federal governments (the incumbent included). Salary increase is desirable, don’t get me wrong. But in the third world, it is often a tactical scam. How do you explain an increase in salary that is immediately counterbalanced by an increase in the prices of primary necessities such as fuel, food and other essential services?

So, I insist that the development path for Lagos State (and the entire Nigeria) in the next 4 years should be a focus on re-planning Lagos, modernising its road networks, and introducing inter and intra city rail and tram systems to permanently eliminate the perennial traffic gridlocks; upgrading education and healthcare systems to make them affordable and world-class; fixing mass water supply and  electricity and extricating the latter from the apron string of federal ‘shobolation’, and; fixing fuel in a manner that frees Lagos from the notorious incompetence of federal interventions in the fuel sub-sector of our energy system, etc.

Again I insist that once the infrastructure commonwealth is fixed, it would have cascading  impacts on the pockets of civil servants. For clarity, if a worker can board a tram or train in Ajah and alight at Surulere 30 minutes later with a fare ticket of N50, his entire transportation cost to work per month could be reduced to N2,000. Now, imagine if his shared energy cost could enjoy similar reduction. Ditto healthcare and education costs for his family and other dependants etc.

Yet, none of my great plans above can happen if the next federal government is opposed to Lagos State!

Way out?

Vote Sanwo-Olu.

Let us return Sanwo-Olu so that we can have the opportunity to see Lagos fully leveraging the benefits of having a Lagosian preside in Aso Rock.

Written By Tunji Light Ariyomo

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