• Tuesday, June 25, 2024
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Governors, national assembly members should earn N62,000 minimum wage – Mbaka

Economic hardship: Father Mbaka hails FeeFund initiative

Ejike Mbaka, a Nigerian clergyman and Catholic priest has called for governors and members of the national assembly to receive the same N62,000 minimum wage proposed by the federal government.

During an interview with Nigerian press, he emphasised that their roles as civil servants should hold the same weight as other government workers.

“If we decide to give labour N60,000 or N62,000, why not generalise it to the house of assembly members, senatorial members, house of representative members, and governors?,” he asked.

”All of them are civil servants. So, are the others slaves? I cannot imagine why somebody can be amassing billions and billions as sitting allowance, wardrobe allowance, newspaper allowance, vehicle allowance and what they call suffering allowance.

“The people that should have such allowances should be the poor masses in the villages.

“As teachers, how much are they being paid? Our nurses and doctors, how much are they being paid? Let us be realistic, our civil servants that wake from Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday.

“They wake up early and return late. How much are they being paid. And look at the level of inflation in the country.”

After the federal government rejected their N494,000 minimum wage request, the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) embarked on a nationwide strike on to enforce their demands.

This demonstration led to a shutdown of power, transportation and other major resources access, including the forceful closure of several public institutions across the nation before it ended following renegotiations with the federal government.

“Just like a joke the labour people entered into the airport and stopped every operation and if this happen again it might tantamount to what nobody dreams or what we dream but out of fear we cannot release to the public,” said Mbaka who has beckoned on the federal government to “speedily” address the matter and prevent another strike action.

Mbaka, the founder and director of Adoration Ministries, Enugu, and Parish Priest at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Emene, is known for voicing criticism about government policies.

In 2021, his call for President Muhammadu Buhari’s resignation over economic mismanagement led to youth protests and the vandalisation of the residence of Callistus Onaga, the Catholic Bishop of Enugu Diocese, accused of his arrest.

Fearing another retaliation, Mbaka believes a pacifying offer is needed to calm emotions.

“We can push these poor Nigerians to the point of rebellion,” he said “If they are not careful, this crisis of a thing can be hijacked and nobody knows the ripples effect.”