We don’t have issues with workers’ salary – Finance Minister…

By Timothy Choji, Abuja

The Nigerian government has assured its workers that despite the effects of COVID-19 and the sliding of the country into recession, their salaries would be paid promptly.

Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed gave the assurance on Wednesday, at the end of this week’s cabinet meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari.

She said already salaries for November have been paid and that of December would also be paid.

“On the issue of Federal workers’ salary, there is no issue with their salary. We have paid salaries for November and we will pay salaries for December. So, there is no issue at all with Federal workers salary,” she affirmed.

The Finance Minister explained that only agencies whose budget funding on the Government Integrated Financial and Management Information System (GIFMIS) have been exhausted had issues with their salaries but that had since been corrected.

“If you hear about any issue it is for agencies whose budget funding under the GIFMIS was exhausted and we have had to make an adjustment.

“When we were doing the 2020 budget, we made estimates of the consequential adjustment that is required as a result of the minimum wage and we had sent the budget before a decision was taken and approval given on that consequential adjustment.

“So, we anticipated that some agencies might run short and we made a block provision in the service-wide vote of the budget. So, when we have such a situation, what we simply do is to remove funds from the service-wide vote to the agencies so that they pay their budget. Therefore, there is no problem with payment of salaries at all,” the Minister explained.

Commenting on the reopening of Nigerian borders, she said the committee saddled with the responsibility of advising the President on the matter has finished its job and would soon submit its report to the Nigerian leader. 

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