State governors have expressed reluctance to approve a minimum wage higher than N70,000, citing economic constraints and sustainability concerns.

During a meeting held in Abuja under the auspices of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), the governors reviewed the nation’s economic situation and concluded that a minimum wage exceeding N70,000 would be neither affordable nor sustainable for the states.

Sources from the meeting revealed that the governors dismissed the idea of a N100,000 minimum wage, which had been suggested by some parties. The discussion centered around options between N60,000, which was previously offered to labor unions by the Federal Government before the strike, and N70,000, the amount currently being paid by the Edo State Government.

Due to the lack of consensus on a uniform minimum wage, the governors established a committee headed by Imo State Governor Hope Uzodimma, who also chairs the Progressives Governors Forum (PGF), representing governors elected on the ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

This decision aligns with earlier statements made by NGF Chairman and Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, who emphasized that states could only agree to a minimum wage that is “affordable and sustainable.”

A source at the meeting explained: “After deliberation on the minimum wage, we decided to consider options between N60,000 and N70,000 a month. We could not reach a concrete decision on the wage rate for states. Eventually, a committee, to be led by Governor Uzodimma, was mandated to look at all presentations and make recommendations. The NGF will soon reconvene to consider the Uzodimma Committee report.”

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The source further added, “No state can afford to pay a N100,000 minimum wage, and we have ruled out this benchmark.”

The NGF’s stance reflects the governors’ commitment to finding a balanced approach that addresses the needs of workers while ensuring fiscal responsibility within the states.