Chairman, Nigeria Governors Forum, and governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari
  • Put deliberation on minimum wage on hold

By Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja

The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has resolved that the Nigerian National Corporation of Petroleum (NNPC) must remit all monies due to the federation account before the Federal Accounts Allocation Committee meeting can go ahead.
The Chairman of the Forum, Gov. Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara, who read out the communique  of the meeting held at the forum’s Secretariat on Wednesday night in Abuja, said the governors also resolved to delay deliberation on the new minimum wage until they receive report from its committee.
Yari said that the forum was yet to receive harmonised report on minimum wage by its members in the Federal Government  inaugurated  committee on the matter.
On the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) deadlock,  Yari said the issue was about disagreement on the figures presented by the corporation.
He said that the governors were not comfortable with irregularities and discrepancies in monthly remittances,  amount for subsidies and cost of maintenance being  withdrawn  at will by the NNPC.
According to the governor, this does not mean that there is a rift  between  the governors and the  NNPC as being  reported.
“You cannot just deep hands into public money and say this is what you are going to do. You either seek the approval  of the National Executive Council or the president. But you  took the money at your discretion  without  approval.
“NNPC is owned by federal, state and local governments. The states and local governments have 48 per cent and federal  government 52 per cent. Therefore, we need  to speak  out when we disagree.
“We are not quarrelling  but  we are having  disagreement  on the numbers and we are saying  NNPC should return  this money for public  sharing. If that one is settled, FAAC will go ahead.

“It is not that we are comfortable. Tomorrow if they  bring another number we will say no because it is  public purse.”

The monthly FAAC meeting was adjourned last week, the third since June 27 and the fifth since the beginning of the year, over controversies surrounding remittances by the NNPC.