All Fingers Are Not Equal, Minimum Wage Negotiations Should Be Decentralized – Fayemi

Governor Kayode Fayemi


A former Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, has once again emphasized the importance of decentralised minimum wage negotiations.

He opined that the states should be allowed to conduct wage negotiations with labour unions without the interference of the Federal Government.

The former chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum shared his thoughts during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme on Friday.

According to him, “The position of the Nigerian Governors Forum when I was governor and chairman of the forum, and I believe even till this recent negotiation, is that we should decentralise minimum wage negotiations and allow states to have their negotiations with their labour unions, whilst the Federal Government conducts its negotiation because fingers are not equal.

“The governor of Lagos State should not be earning the same salary as the governor of Ekiti State. He has more resources, but we all go by rank. And the N600,000 that I earn in Ekiti is what Governor Sanwo-Olu earns in Lagos.

“I don’t believe that we’re being real with ourselves. This should be decentralised, and each state should define in conjunction with their labour union, with transparency, all the records provided to the labour union that look, this is what we have.”

He further explained the broader implications of a centralised minimum wage, noting that only a small percentage of the population benefits directly from these negotiations.

You are only five or ten per cent of our population. We also have 90 per cent of the population that we must attend to. Yes, you are 10 per cent and you probably cater to maybe four or five months each of you in your various homes. But the reality is that there are things that must come from the common pool to service the overall interests of all the citizens in the state or at the national level,” Fayemi added.