Hike In Pump Price: Okowa Reverses Suspended Minimum Wage Package In Delta

Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta state, has ordered the state Commissioner of Finance and the Accountant General to ensure immediate implementation of the reversed minimum wage package for workers and political appointees in the state.

This was contained in a statement by the Secretary to the State Government, Chiedu Ebie on Friday.

The salaries of workers and political appointees in the state was review downward following sharp revenue drop in the state occasioned by COVID-19 global pandemic.

The review which took effect from July 2020 was intended to last until December, 2020.

BIGPEN, however, learnt that the state government, restored the former salaries scale following recent upward review of pump price of petroleum products in the country.

The SSG, in the statement said, “Deltans will recall that following the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the National economy and the consequent sharp drop in revenues accruing to all tiers of government, the State Government, after due consultations with the Organized Labour, carried out a downward review of the salaries of its workforce comprising political appointees and officers on Salary Grade Level 07 and above.

“However, due to the effects of the recent upward review of pump price of petroleum products and electricity tariffs, His Excellency, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State has directed the immediate restoration of salaries of the affected categories of workers and appointees.

“The State Government commends the understanding exhibited by the Organized Labour and the affected personnel. As we await the full reflation of the country’s economy, Deltans and other residents are implored to continue to lend support to Government’s efforts at confronting the current economic challenge.

“The Honourable Commissioner of Finance and the Accountant General have already been directed to ensure immediate implementation of this directive”, the statement reads.

It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had on Monday for the first time personally defended the recent hike in price of premium motor spirit (PMS) popularly known as petrol and electricity tariff.

President Buhari said the COVID-19 pandemic, which had affected economies globally, compelled his administration to make some necessary far-reaching adjustments for long-term gains with some initial pain.

Buhari, who listed negative consequences if government should resume the business of fixing or subsidizing PMS prices, said it would mean a return to the costly subsidy regime with the potential return of fuel queues.

President Buhari spoke on the decisions which had attracted criticisms from some Nigerians, especially opposition political parties and analysts at the First Year Ministerial Performance Review Retreat held at the Conference Centre of the State House, Abuja.