There are strong indications that the federal government may cut workers’ salaries as part of efforts to reduce the high cost of governance.
The hint was dropped yesterday by the minister of finance, Zainab Ahmed, when she the government was working towards reducing the high cost of governance.
She spoke at a policy dialogue on corruption and cost of governance in Nigeria which was organised by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission in Abuja.
The minister said the President Muhammadu Buhari had asked the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission to review the salaries of civil servants and employees of several agencies to save cost.
She therefore charged the agencies to work towards cutting down cost because of dwindling earnings by the government.
According to her, the government plans to remove certain items from the budget to reduce the cost of governance.
She said, “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 cutting down on cost,’’ Ahmed said.
In his remarks, the ICPC chairman, Prof Bolaji Owasanoye (SAN) listed payroll padding and the saga of ghost workers and abuse of recruitment as areas of concern in governance cost.