- Buhari Signs N30,000 Minimum Wage, Workers Hail President
President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday signed the N30,000 National Minimum Wage Bill into law, ending the anxiety caused by the delay.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, was elated on Thursday as he broke the news to State House correspondents soon after Buhari gave his nod to the bill.
The presidential liaison officer stated that the payment of the N30,000 to workers would begin immediately.
The former senator said, “President Muhammadu Buhari has assented to the Minimum Wage Repeal and Enactment Act 2019.
“This makes it compulsory for all employers of labour in Nigeria to pay to their workers the sum of N30,000. And this excludes persons who are employing less than 25 workers; persons who work in a ship which sails out of jurisdiction and other persons who are in other kinds of regulated employment which are accepted by the Act.
“It also gives the workers the right, if you are compelled by any circumstance to accept a salary that is less than N30,000, to sue your employer to recover the balance and it authorises the minister of labour and any person nominated by the minister of labour, or any person designated by the minister of labour in any ministry, department or agency to on your behalf, take action in your name against such employer to recover the balance of your wages.”
He added, “It also ensures and mandates the National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission and the minister of labour to be the chief and principal enforcers of the provisions of this law. And this law applies to all agencies, persons and bodies throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
On the effective date of the Act, he said, “The effective date is 18th of April, 2019, as Mr President has assented to it. It has been assented to today and it takes effect today, except such other provisions as are contained in the Act.
“But the enforcement and the right to start the implementation of the provisions commences today (Thursday), including such steps that are to be taken gradually under the provisions of the Act.”
Meanwhile, at the signing of the bill, the President was quoted to have said that he expected Nigerian workers to be more committed to their jobs.
“I expect them (workers) to be more committed to their work at whichever level.
“I will like, with the cooperation of the Nigeria Labour Congress, to look at the economic situation of the country, the population, the poor infrastructure that we are trying to fix in terms of roads, rail and power.
“So, I wish Nigerian workers the best of luck”, he reportedly said in a brief speech.
In its reaction, the organised labour in the country said Nigerian workers appreciated the signing of the new minimum wage bill into law, stressing that labour unions would ensure its compliance by all states.
The President of the Trade Union Congress, Bobboi Kaigama, on a telephone chat with our correspondent, said, “Workers and TUC appreciates President Muhammadu Buhari for signing the Minimum Wage bill into law. It is a welcome development to workers and everyone and we hope that the template will be released soon by the Salaries and Wages Commission so that we can have consequential discussion on the increases.
“All we need now is to call on government to convey the meeting of the Trade Council to discuss the issue of consequential increases so that circulars can be issued to the states for guidance.”
Effort to get the General Secretary of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Peter Ozo-Eson, was not successful as his mobile number was busy.
President Buhari to Sign 2020 Revised Budget Today
Buhari to Sign 2020 Revised Budget Into Law on Friday
President Muhammadu Buhari will sign the 2020 revised budget on Friday, according to the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed.
Ahmed disclosed this on Thursday after a meeting with the leaders of the National Assembly on the 2021-2023 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper.
Ahmed said, “In keeping strictly with the January–December budget cycle, the President will tomorrow (Friday) sign into law, the revised N10.8tn budget for the year 2020, which was passed by the National Assembly in June.
“This for us is a journey towards ensuring that the progress that we have made as a collective to return the fiscal year to January – December is maintained for the 2021 budget as well.
“The President has directed that we must deliver the budget to the National Assembly by the end of September.”
Ahmed further stated that between the months of January and May 2020, the Federal Government generated N1.48 trillion in revenue, 56 percent of its initial target.
She added that out of all the total amount generated as revenue during the period, oil revenues were N701.6 billion while the non-oil tax revenues accounted for N439.32 billion.
Companies Income Tax and Value Added Tax contributed N213.24 billion and N68.09 billion, respectively. The Customs realised N158 billion during the period under review.
She said, “Other revenues amounted to N339.51bn, of which independent revenues was N80.22bn.
“Recoveries and stamp duty collected during the period are yet to be booked in the fiscal accounts.”
Africa’s Economy to Contract by $236bn in Value in 2020 Says AfDB
African GDP to Contract by $236bn in Value Says AfDB
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has said the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic could cost the entire African continent about $236.7 billion in cumulative Gross Domestic Product.
The bank disclosed this in its latest report on African Economic Outlook (Supplement) released on Tuesday.
The bank predicted that the damage could be far greater if the impacts of the pandemic persist on the continent beyond the second quarter of the year. It said this could lead to a bigger contraction in Africa’s GDP in 2020.
According to the bank, the continent’s Real GDP could contract by as much as 1.7 percent this year if the virus has a shorter duration. This represents about a 5.6 percent decline from the January 2020 prediction.
However, under a long term scenario into the second half of the year, this could result in a deeper contraction in GDP.
This, the bank said could lead to 3.4 contraction, up from the 1.7 percent projected under the shorter duration and represents a decline of 7.3 percent from the previous projection before the outbreak.
It, therefore, said the combined loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Africa could range between $173.1 billion and $234.7 billion in 2020-2021.
Brent Crude Oil Maintains $43 Per Barrel Despite Surge in US Inventories
Brent Crude Oil Sustains Upsurge Despite Rising US Inventories
Brent crude oil, against which Nigerian oil is priced, sustained its upsurge at $43 per barrel on Wednesday during the London trading session despite a report showing a build-up in the U.S. crude inventories in the week ended July 3, 2020.
According to the U.S Energy Information Administration (EIA) report released on Tuesday, crude oil production in the U.S is expected to decline by just 70,000 barrels per day from the 670,000 bpd previously predicted to 600,000 bpd.
While this was below the projected decline, it also points to a build-up in U.S stockpiles and suggested that oil production from the world’s largest economy may not decline as previously projected in 2020.
“The EIA’s forecast of a lower decline in U.S. output was partially offset by its outlook for firm demand recovery, which limited losses in oil markets,” Hiroyuki Kikukawa, general manager of research at Nissan Securities said.
“Still, expectations that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies would taper oil output cuts from August and softer U.S. equities added to pressure,” he said.
The EIA projected that global oil demand will recover through the end of 2021 as demand was predicted to hit 101.1 million barrels per day in the fourth quarter of the year.
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