The Presidency has accused the presidential candidate of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar of trying to score cheap political goals with minimum wage issue currently before President Muhammadu Buhari.
Presidential spokesman Femi Adesina who disclosed this was reacting to comments by the Atiku Media Office, which said “President Buhari cannot be trusted to implement the ‘new’ minimum wage of N30, 000’’ recommended by the Pepple tripartite committee”.
Adesina said: “Those who have latched onto the concocted controversy to play cheap politics, we appeal to them to remember that elections are not won through loquaciousness, and trying to demean the President at every drop of a hat.
“But then, it is not surprising, as they have nothing else to sell to Nigerians, if they don’t ride on the name of the President. Stiff judgment awaits them at the polls.’’
The presidential aide frowned at the recurring reports alleging that Buhari had reneged on an earlier acceptance of the N30, 000 recommended as the new National Minimum Wage by the National Minimum Wage Tripartite Committee.
He noted that these reports were contrary to what transpired on Tuesday when the committee presented its report to the President.
Adesina said the President, while acknowledging the concerns raised by government on affordability and labour’s focus on meaningful increase, stated clearly in a speech, which was made available to the media, that:
“Our plan is to transmit an Executive Bill to the National Assembly for passage within the shortest possible time. I am fully committed to having a new National Minimum Wage Act in the very near future.
“Until the proposed minimum wage has gone through the whole gamut of law-making, President Buhari, who is a stickler for due process, will not be caught in this unnecessary web of controversy, which amounts to putting the cart before the horse and hair-splitting.’’
But an Atiku group insisted yesterday that an Atiku Abubakar presidency would usher in a new beginning for growth.
The New Nation with Atiku (NNB) noted that under the present circumstance, the former Vice President stood out as the best chance to take the country to the Promise Land.
Briefing reporters yesterday in Abuja, the group’s Director General, Adesina Abolade and National Coordinator, Blessing Braide, said they were prepared to canvass for votes for Atiku once the ban on political campaign is lifted.
He also stressed that the group is not a political and does not belong to any political party, “But we are close to what is happening and that is why we have come together to say that we will support the vision of Atiku …”