Seyi Makinde, governor of Oyo, says the state cannot afford to pay the new minimum wage of N30,000. Makinde spoke while delivering his inaugural address on Wednesday.
The governor said he believes each state should be allowed to decide the minimum wage of its workforce according to its financial capability.
“Recently, the federal government announced a new salary scheme in which the lowest cadre of civil servants are expected to earn at least N30,000,” he said.
“I know how access to this type of money will improve the lives of many of the families that I have had direct contact with.
“With the way the Oyo state account currently stands, I will be deceiving you if I said we are capable of taking on this burden.
“I believe in true federalism. I believe the states should decide the minimum wage of their workforce based on individual realities.
“All states are not created equal, so it is against the principle of fairness to apply a blanket rule to govern them all.”
The governor, however, said his administration would hold “sincere dialogue” with labour unions to arrive at the best possible decision in the overall interest of workers in the state.
He promised to reduce government overheads, increase the efficiency in tax collection, simplify the tax payment system and cut down on debt accumulation without concrete repayments plans.
The governor also abolished the payment of N3000 school fee in state-owned secondary schools.