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NYSC members will earn minimum wage, Finance Minister confirms

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ZAINAB Ahmed, Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, has confirmed that members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) will also benefit from the revised national minimum wage.

Ahmed gave the clarification while addressing a press conference at the headquarters of the Ministry of Finance on Thursday, saying that the committee set up by President Muhammadu Buhari to work out the modalities for the implementation of the new minimum wage took the NYSC into consideration.

Recall that it was based on the report of the Bismark Rewane-headed committee that Buhari signed the new minimum wage bill into law, thereby approving an increment from N18,000 to N30,000 for the least worker in Nigeria.

The finance minister, during the press conference, explained why the new minimum wage was yet to take effect, saying that a lot of other calculations were yet to be worked out with regards to the increments that would apply up the ladder of the federal civil service.

“Apart from the increase of the minimum wage from N18, 000 to N30, 000, there is also the consequential adjustment that we have to negotiate with the labour unions,” Ahmed explained.

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“The total implication of that would be worked out only after the negotiations and that would involve determining how much increase every other staff that is above the minimum wage would get. It could be a flat amount or a proportion.

“The other aspect that is clear is that there would be an increase for the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) as well because by the Act they should earn at least the minimum wage and the NYSC also has to increase to that N30, 000.

“So, because we have not done the negotiation with labour, I cannot give you the details of what we are projecting because it is simply on projections, at the end of the day, it is what we agree with labour that will be the amount that is due.”

NYSC members currently earn a monthly allowance of N19,800, which took effect from July 2011. Before then, they earned approximately N9,700.

There had been many rumours of an increment in corps members’ allowance over the years, with some saying it had been increased to N31,800 and others N49,800, but none of them had proven true.

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