TUC calls for review of revenue sharing formula
The President of Trade Union Congress (TUC), Comrade Quadri Olaleye, has called for the review of the nation’s revenue sharing formula in favour of the state and local governments against the present formula in which the large chunk of the earnings go to the Federal Government at the detriment of development in other tiers of government.
Besides, the congress is advocating that the wage package of political office holders in terms of salary and allowance, should be made to be the same as that of the civil servants.
Olaleye, advised that the Federal Government should review the revenue sharing formula to financially empower the states and local government to undertake projects that would impact on the lives of Nigerians.
According to him, the current sharing formula whereby the Federal Government takes the larger percentage of the revenue has rendered the state and local governments financially impotent.
Comrade Olaleye, who was speaking when he met with the leadership of Nigerian Union of Journalists, Lagos State chapter in his office in Lagos, assured that he would work for the progress of workers in Lagos and the country at large.
According to him, there is no significant project undertaken by the states and local government because of the huge percentage of revenue that is retained by the federal government.
On the delay in the payment of the new national minimum wage, he said the time has come for politicians to be on a wage package akin to that of the civil servants, adding that it will make politics less attractive.
He pointed out that the cost of governance in the country is disturbing and very high, adding that this remains the reason why the Federal Government is claiming that it cannot pay the new wage.
He however assured that the minimum wage issue would be resolved very soon.
On the recent ban of foreign exchange for importation of food, the TUC President urged the government to be specific by mentioning the affected food items.
He said: “Milk is a raw material and we are not producing enough to meet our need, so we must import. Dangote has tomatoes Paste Company but can the tomatoes available meet up to 70 per cent of his company’s installed capacity for one month? No. We are a cocoa producing country yet companies import to remain in business. Some things are not just right.”
Comrade Olaleye advised government to be mindful of its policies so that the country would not lose the existing companies to smuggling.
“We have also written to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to be cautious in releasing forex as many privileged individuals now trade in dollars. They are not being fair to the local industries and the economy”. He added.
Also speaking, the NUJ President, Comrade Qasim Akinreti, urged the Congress leadership to speed up action on its negotiation of the new national minimum wage with the government so that workers can start enjoying the new wage.
He stressed the need to find a level ground to enable workers to start to enjoy the new wage.