The Chairman, Senate Committee on Army and member of the Committee on Establishment, Ali Ndume (APC Borno South) on Thursday threatened to leave the country if the executive refused to put things in order.
He also accused the Federal Government of mismanaging the economy and refusing to address the country’s unemployment crises.
Senator Ndume who described the state of unemployment as a “ticking time bomb,” frowned at the failure of the National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission ( NSIWC) to tell the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly the total amount of salaries and wages the Federal Government pays its workforce yearly.
He said this when the Chairman of National Salaries , Income and Wages Commission (NSIWC) Mr Ekpo Nta appeared before the Committee to defend the increase in recurrent expenditure component of the Commission’s 2022 budget.
Picking holes in the presentation made by the NSIWC Chairman, Ndume condemned yearly increases on recurrent expenditures of Ministries, Commissions and Agencies of government despite existing embargo on recruitments.
“Honestly speaking, time bomb is ticking out there with this policy because of the doors shut out against millions of youths seeking for employment through the embargo and retirements at the various agencies.
“Making it worrisome is the fact that despite the policy , since 2018 till now, recurrent expenditure components of yearly budget have been increasing.”
He added that “in 2018 the budget was N3.5trillion , N4trillion in 2019, N4.5trillion in 2020, N5.6trillion 2021 and N6.83trillion in the projected N16.39trillion 2022 budget
“It is bad for recurrent expenditure to be increasing on yearly basis without increase in the number of workforce through required recruitments. The embargo is turning to a time bomb that can explode at anytime as witnessed in some countries in recent past.
“Personally, I’m already thinking of where to run to if the avoidable crisis is not averted. I visited Ghana and Niger recently in this regard,” the Borno South lawmaker asserted.
In his remarks the Chairman of the Committee, Ibrahim Shekarau (Kano, APC) directed the Head of the Salaries and Wages Commission to liaise with the Accountant General of the federation and other management officials of IPPIS for required harmonization in arriving at total amount of salaries / wages federal government pays per annum.
The NSIWC boss had earlier in his presentation lamented that his agency recruited last in 2008 and that the planned extension of year of service and retirement age for primary and secondary schools teachers , will further shut the door against fresh graduates .
“The policy seems good but what happened to young graduates with teaching qualification,” he quipped.
Other members of the committee like Suleiman Kwari (APC Kaduna North), Nicholas Tofowomo ( PDP Ondo Central ) and the Chairman of the committee, Ibrahim Shekarau (APC Kano North), aligned themselves with Ndume’s admonition. (Daily Independent)
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