Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, has inaugurated the Joint Negotiation Committee on the Implementation of the New Minimum Wage with a charge to work out modalities that will make it seamless for Government to implement its payment to workers.
While inaugurating the 16-man committee which has the State Head of Service, Sir Onyi Wamah as Chairman, at Government House, Umuahia, the Governor urged them to see it as part of their responsibility to look into the issue of ghost workers and padding of salaries which to a large extent make the wage bill too heavy and unrealistic and recommend ways of finding lasting solutions to them. He assured that the government is committed to paying the new minimum wage to Abia workers.
The Governor who was represented by his Deputy, Sir Ude Oko Chukwu, expressed satisfaction with the calibre of members of the Committee whom he described as people with a pedigree, integrity and experienced in labour matters, and mandated them to expedite action and submit their report on or before the 31st of December, 2019.
He used the forum to reassure workers in the state that the present administration will continue to evolve programs and policies that will ensure that workers’ welfare is enhanced for optimal performance in line with his friendly disposition towards the state’s workforce and called for support to enable government realize its vision for the state
Responding on behalf of other members, the Chairman, Joint Negotiation Committee on the Implementation of the New Minimum Wage and the State Head of Service, Sir Onyi Wamah, thanked the Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, for finding them worthy to serve and assured that they will work assiduously to come out with a favourable payment structure for the State civil servants that will also be workable for government. He described Governor Ikpeazu as the best for civil servants in the state,
Other members of the committee are the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Permanent Secretary/Executive Secretary, Planning Commission, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, Permanent Secretary, Establishment/Pension who will serve as secretary, Permanent Secretary, Local Government Service Commission, Auditor General of the State, the Accountant General of the State, Joint council Chairman (Labour spokesman) and TUC Chairman, NLC Chairman, NUT Chairman, NULGE Chairman as well as Chairman Council 1, Chairman Council 2 and Chairman Council 3.
Top Government officials, including the Secretary to the State Government, Barr Chris Ezem, members of the State Executive Council, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Office of the Deputy Governor and others were present during the inauguration.