Rt. Rev. Akinpelu Johnson, the Diocesan Bishop of the Diocese of Lagos Mainland (Anglican Communion), has commended the Federal Government for granting the new minimum wage and called for introduction of more policies and measures aimed at cushioning the economic hardship of Nigerians.
Johnson spoke at the 1st Session of the 5th Synod of the diocese, with theme: “Who is on the Lord’s Side? Let Him Come to Me,” at the All Saints Church, Yaba on Friday.
The cleric said though some state governments had said they would not be able to pay the new minimum wage, they should actually be able to do so if they curb wasteful spending and have financial discipline.
He said: “Although some state governments have announced their inability to pay the new wage, we think they can, if they have both the political will and financial discipline to curb wasteful spending.
“With a little more prudence in the management of their financial resources, every state of the federation can pay the new minimum wage.
“Once the public sector leads in their direction, the private sector employers, including the non-profit organisations such as the church, must take a cue by doing same.”
Johnson also urged employees to commit to higher productivity in the overall interest of their employers and the nation.
He appealed to the Federal Government to invest hugely in the education sector to improve the quality of education in Nigeria.
According to him, the prosperity of any country is based on the quality of education it offers its citizens at all levels.
He said: “The prosperity of any country is based on the quality of education it offers its citizens at all levels, but perhaps most importantly at the foundational stage of people’s lives.
“No country can flourish without a solid foundational system; our educational system is at its lowest ebb and public education for the average Nigerian child is nothing to write home about.
“We implore the various agencies of government responsible for the sector to do more to raise the standard of education in the country by increasing investment in infrastructure and manpower.
“The endless strike in our institutions of higher learning can only be detrimental to the future of this country.”
The cleric urged the Federal Government to encourage the private sector to join the public sector in funding research grants for universities.
Speaking on the security situation of the country, the cleric urged the Federal Government to put measures in place to restore confidence in Nigerians and bring peace to troubled areas.
Johnson said: “The issue of insecurity has continued with even greater intensity; Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen problems have continued unabated, claiming lot of lives and properties.
“Kidnapping has become a veritable source of income for many youths.”
The Bishop urged the government to be more vigorous in tackling insecurity.