As President Goodluck Jonathan signed into law the new minimum wage, states have begun to contest the Federal Government’s 52.68 per cent revenue which it collects at the end of the month should be reviewed downward.
Speaking to the newsmen at the end of the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee(FAAC) meeting in Abuja, the Chairman of Finance Commissioners Forum, Mallam Rabo Usman said that the states spend more on personnel cost than the federal government and so more funds should be allocated to the states and local governments to be able to cope with the burden of the minimum wage.
“We have issues at states and local government levels but people look at them as if they are non issues. But they are serious issues. We have an issue in this country where the federal government takes over 50 per cent. Of course we are under obligation to pay this minimum wage because it is a law but the only thing is that we have to appeal to the leadership of this country to look into the source of funding compassionately. Take personnel cost in this country for example, if you put the total personnel cost of states and local governments in this country together, is it not higher than what the federal government pays as personnel cost?. It is a common sense that states and local governments spend higher than the Federal Government on personnel cost. So, why should theFederal Government take more that 50 per cent of what we generate in this country?. These are issues I would want labour to fight together. Yes we agree we will pay but you cannot
give what you don’t’ have. But we have a source where all workers in this country can be treated fairly” he said.
Giving the breakdown of the revenue allocation for the month of March, earlier, Minister of State for Finance, Hajiya Yabawa Wabi said that from the revenue of N357.933 billion, the Federal Government got N168.842 billion while states got N85.639 billion and the local Governments garnered N66.024 billion. Also, the oil-producing states received N37.428 billion