Workers may see their salaries slashed as the Federal Government has proposed the move in a bid to reduce the high cost of governance in the West African nation.
This was made known by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning Zainab Ahmed, who said the FG was working to reduce the high cost of governance by doing away with unnecessary expenditures.
“We still see government expenditure increase to a terrain twice higher than our revenue. The nation’s budgets are filled every year with projects that are recycled over and over again and are also not necessary.
“Mr President has directed that the salaries committee that I chair, work together with the Head of Service and other members of the committee to review the government payrolls in terms of stepping down on cost.’’
The minister said that government will also review the number of government agencies in terms of their mandates, adding that the government will consider merging two agencies with the same mandate.
The Director-General of the Budget Office, Ben Akabueze disclosed that the cost of governance under the President Muhammadu Buhari administration has risen sharply from N3.61 trillion in 2015 to N5.26trn in 2018 and N7.91trn in 2020.
Akabueze noted that recurrent spending accounted for more than 75 per cent of actual Ministries, Departments and Agencies’ expenditure between 2011 and 2020.
In his remarks, the ICPC Chairman, Prof Bolaji Owasanoye, SAN, identified payroll padding and the phenomenon of ghost workers and abuse of recruitment as areas of concern in governance cost, noting that the ICPC findings from health and medical institutions indicate that many agencies still engage in unapproved recruitment without obtaining the consent of all relevant organs of government.