The Federal Government has confirmed that members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) will receive at least N30,000 as monthly allowance due to the signing of the new national minimum wage bill.
President Muhammadu Buhari signed the bill into law last month to increase the national minimum wage from N18,000 to N30,000 after months of negotiations with labour unions and state governments.
The law makes it compulsory for all employers of labour in Nigeria to pay their workers the sum of N30,000, with the exclusion of employers with less than 25 employees.
The signing of the bill had led to speculations about how it would affect corps members who currently earn N19,800 as monthly allowance from the Federal Government.
The speculations have now been put to bed by the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, who revealed that the government is working out the modalities of the new minimum wage.
Twitter/@ZShamsunaMinister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed [Twitter/@ZShamsuna]
While speaking at a press conference on Thursday, May 16, 2019, she said corps members will now be paid the minimum wage, at least.
She said, “Apart from the increase of the minimum wage from N18,000 to N30,000, there is also a consequential adjustment that we have to negotiate with the labour unions.
“The total implication of that would be worked out only after the negotiations and that would involve determining how much increase every other employees above the minimum wage would get.
“It could be a flat amount or a proportion, but the other aspect that is clear is that there would be an increase for the National Youth Service Corps as well because, by the Act, they should earn at least the minimum wage and the NYSC also has to increase to that N30,000.”
The minister said negotiations will first have to be concluded with labour unions before details of final payments will be made public.
While speaking earlier this week, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, evaded directly answering a question about when government would start payment of the new minimum wage even though President Buhari said last month that it was to take immediate effect.
Ngige said there were still processes and procedures the new wage would undergo before the commencement of its implementation, but that arrears would be paid any time implementation begins.