Maduako Igbokwe l Sunday, September 18, 2022
AWKA, Anambra – Chairman Nigeria Union of Journalists, (NUJ), Anambra State Council, Comrade Odogwu Emeka Odogwu has advocated for urgent harmonization of salary structures in Nigeria for a better living standard in the country.
He said the harmonization of the salary structures would bridge the gap between federal and state government, even the private workers. Odogwu made the call while addressing newsmen in Awka, the Anambra state capital on the celebration of UN declared International equal pay day for workers.
According to him, workers in the state civil service are paid below their counterpart at the federal level ,despite performing similar functions and duties. He described workers in some private sector as slaves.
His words, “It is very appalling that in Nigeria people are taking different salaries. For instance, people working in the federal, state and even the local government are taking different salaries.
“I don’t think it augurs well with workers at the state and council levels, considering the fact that they perform the same functions and similar duties. They also work under the same economy and shop from the same markets.
“Take a look at the fact that the take home of a director working under federal government is three times more than his colleague in state ministry. Monthly wages of some civil servants in state ministries are laughable, whereas their counterparts at the federal level earn reasonable pay.”
“The worst hit are those under parastatals where someone, after working for so many years, retires without pension and gratuity, “he said. He said those in the private sector are being massively exploited by the employers
Odogwu said “It is only in the private sector you see a graduate taking home something below minimum wage as monthly salary”
Commemorating the 2022 International Equal Pay Day, celebrated 18 September every year, the NUJ chairman urged President Mohammadu Buhari to direct the Salaries and Wages Commission to address the anomaly and set a benchmark for salaries of both the federal, and state workers, even private sector.
He also challenged the Anambra state government to consider looking into the payment structure in its agencies and parastatals as well as improve on the salaries and welfare of workers in the state to get the best out the workforce.
He appealed to private organizations to ensure they pay a reasonable wage to their workers judging by economic situation in the country.