Fourth, we can import from the constitutional sections and subsections aforementioned that at any point in time, the distribution of the national income must be such as should take care of the issues raised in Section 16 subsection 2d.
During a period of abundance, more will be proportionately allocated, while the otherwise is also true during scarcity, both the increase and decrease being based on generally acceptable established proportions.
Thus when attempting to find meanings to the interpretations of Section 124 Subsection 3 and Section 173 Subsection 2, it is the general increase or decrease as it affects the employee that should be the issue. The wages of those employed should follow a general trend without any sentiment.
It is the deviation by non-inclusion in the general trend that constitutes a bias which can lead to the employee’s disadvantage. It is this type of deviation that the Constitution is against. Thus if there is a general decline of 15% in national income (revenue), an employee’s wage cut cannot be more than 15% without violating the provisions of these sections of the Constitution.
The Constitution does not provide that the government should steal or borrow to pay employees’ salaries and allowances when revenue falls, especially where there is little or no reserve to make such payment sustainable.
Fifth, the Constitution does not provide that government should retire or retrench workers in order to meet up with the payment of wages as has been the case in the since the time of Mr. Buhari in 1984 till date. It is the mental laziness of those in authority to carefully read and understand the import of the Constitution as a system with several sub-systems that has led to the quick but avoidable policy thrusts such as rationalization, retrenchment, retirement, etc.
Sixth, the Constitution does not provide that the salary of a Nigerian public servant should or could be compared with that of his counterpart anywhere in the world, be it in America, Europe, Asia or Africa as the RMAFC did. The comparison of Mr. Yar’Adua’s salary with those of his counterpart in West Africa was, therefore, a breach of the Constitution by the RMAFC.
Seventh, the Constitution does not state anywhere that salaries and allowances of employees should be blindly increased as a result of a rally in the market price of our mono-commodity product, the crude oil. What the Constitution states is that government should pursue an even development through the promotion of “national prosperity, and an efficient, a dynamic and self-reliant economy”, unquote (See: Section 16 Subsection 1a of the Constitution).
As at the time of RMAFC’s questionable recommendation for wage increases, there was an uneven development, a weak and import dependent economy, a skewed mono-commodity export revenue source, high unemployment rate, among others. The summary is that the RMAFC’s recommendations and their implementations since 2007 are all clearly in breach of the Constitution.
That breach can only be corrected by a general return to the status quo as at May 29, 2007 when Mr. Yar’Adua took the Oath of Office as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Eighth, the RMAFC would have to work out a much more appropriate formula for the distribution of our national income to cater for: (i) housing for all, (ii) food for all, (iii) full employment, and (iv) benefits for the unemployed, aged, sick, and the disabled. It is upon the basis of the new formula that the RMAFC can show to the nation whether those in employment are currently underpaid contrary to the aforementioned provisions of Sections 124 (3) and 173 (2). It is only when underpaid that these constitutional provisions are breached.
Ninth, it is rather unfortunate that those in positions of authority in Nigeria are physically very hardworking but largely mentally lazy. They spend most of their working hours and night ruminating on solutions to problems that have been solved already by the Constitution and or similar statutes. After all the thinking, reports, meetings and retreats, the solutions arrived at have often breached the Constitution and or similar statutes that they wish to uphold.
This to me implies working with the wrong tools and or inadequate knowledge. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is like our bible. It should first be thoroughly read and understood before venturing to its application. But in Nigeria, the application comes first, and when there is trouble there is recourse to the Constitution for protection.
Tenth, as would have been noted from all the foregoing, we have half-baked elites problem in Nigeria. It was the same reasoning that the RMAFC used to increase salaries of public servants between 200% and 300% in the days early days of Mr. Obasanjo that has been used again to justify the new increase that caused the current problem. Once money is available, the desire to squander and embezzle heightens.
Rather than allow the law to deal with these illegalities, the first solution by our half-baked elites is to assume that increases in salaries would turn the tide. Salaries and wages are assumed to be the only issue required to boost productivity, reduce corruption, accelerate literacy, etc without any consideration for the use of the Constitution.
I like to conclude by quoting from the work of Mr. Kunstler written on America that, and I quote: “What it comes down to, apparently, is a leadership elite across all sectors - politics, business, academia, media - that is incapable of processing the truth, and then conveying it to the broad American (in this case, Nigerian) public.
Alas, this also appears to be a common theme in history, with a commonly tragic outcome, which is that elites get ruthlessly dumped and replaced by new elites, often composed of zealots, maniacs, nincompoops, and others generally ill-disposed to the able management of complex affairs”, unquote (See: James Howard Kunstler – Hope = Truth, Whiskey and Gunpowder, www.agorafinancial.com, April 29, 2009).
As usual, I welcome both criticism(s) and comment(s) either publicly or privately or both. Those criticizing must arm themselves with sufficient facts lest they become objects for critical re-examination. My e-mail address remains jaomotayo2 at yahoo.co.uk. CONCLUDED.
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Kemmy Agbayewa Maryland, U.S.A. May 19, 2009
Concerning the article mr J.A. omotayo wrote about the late CHIEF R.A. AGBAYEWA All I am saying is no one will Know better than I. WHY??? I was there, up till his death.
I lived with the man the first fifteen years of my life. I AM ONE OF HIS CHILDREN. mR OMOTAYO WROTE AND I QUOTE"if anyone passes in-frony of the late AGBAYEWA's house without showing the then npn sign they will be beaten" Come-on man you call your self a journalist, being a student of mass comunication/ journalism my-self i should no better.
Journalism 101- RESEARCH! RESEARCH! RESEARCH!!!!!!!!!!! Iam not saying because the man is dead he should be looked at as a saint, Far from it. But please get your facts straight. Mr omotayo you are the one to cross-check your records!. And oh! there's absolutely no reason for you to be afraid ala or no ala. If you can't get your stories from the right sources DON'T WRITE THEM. Leave the writting to the experts.
Good-luck and God's speed.
Kemmy Agbayewa Maryland, U.S.A. May 14, 2009
The article written my J A OMOTAYO concerning Chief R. A. Agbayewa is a laod of B.S. My advise to the editor -in- chief is to make sure that who-ever is writting an article on behalf of this site should do their homework. In-other-word do a thorough research concerning the who,what, where and how.
This will in turn will leave this site/ business free from libel (LEGAL SUITE). Chief Robert Adewole Agbayewa was one of the best people that country(Nigeria) and the then Ondo state. The day he was ASSASINATED was the day God Put a dark CLOUD in the state of ondo.
DO YOUR RESEARCHAND SHOW SOME RESPECT TO HIS LOVED ONES.
OMOTAYO, J. A. Lagos, NIGERIA May 14, 2009
"Ala ki i ba omo l'eru, ko ma le e ro" meaning that no matter the fear caused by a nightmare, a child can always relate it.
I write without any fear because all my accounts are accurate. Kemmy should point out any lies in any of my writings. That a man is dead does not mean that he should become a saint or a satan.
It is very interesting that both of us are from Akure. I have no reason to paint the late Mr. Agbayewa black. If Kemmy has forgotten the details of events preceding the 1983 elections in Akure, Ondo State, she should come back home to verify them.
I am not a politician, and I have never being in politics either as a student member or as an employee. Kemmy should also crosscheck this record.
I receive no payment for my writings but I am happy that I have written on issues where sentiments have made so many people to mislead the generality of Nigerians in my attempts to put the records strait for posterity.
I wish Kemmy all the best in her endeavours.
God bless Nigeria
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