The Nigerian federal workers have criticised the 15% salary increase announced by the government Wednesday, saying it fell short of their expectations. In their reactions Friday, leaders of various labour unions also denounced the publicity given the increase, saying this could trigger inflation. A government panel on salary review headed by former Nigerian Head of State Ernest Shonekan, had recommended a 25% pay raise. “The new pay structure is not in line with the Shonekan (Panels’) recommendations and this is an evidence that the government is still in the habit of disregarding social dialogue,” charged Fidelis Edeh, President of the Nigerian Civil Service Union.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) out-rightly rejected the new salary, saying it negated the principle of collective bargaining and autonomy which the union had been
agitating for. “We won’t accept that because workers should negotiate their worth in a sane economy,” said ASUU President Abduallahi Sule-Kano. Other critics of the new consolidated salaries and allowances structure for federal workers also claim the anticipated gain would be cancelled out by a high tax regime.