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Economy

Why minimum wage won’t task law firms, by lawyer

A Lagos lawyer Mr Charles Echefulachukwu has said most law firms will have no problem paying the new minimum wage.

According to him, while the minimum wage is not binding on every law firm, it is expected that no law firm should pay below it.

Echefulachukwu said most law firms already pay far above the minimum wage.

He, however, added that N30,000 should be the minimum standard salary for support staff of even smaller firms despite being exempt from the law.

“The new minimum wage law is very clear: every employer has to pay it. But there is a proviso: if you’re not employing up to 25 staff, you are exempted from the minimum wage.

“If a firm has up to 50 lawyers, the law says you must pay the minimum wage.

“But the minimum wage is N30,000. Several law firms in Lagos are already paying far beyond that.

“It should not be an issue in the legal profession,” he said.

Echefulachukwu spoke on the sidelines of a talkshow organised by the Insighful Ladies Forum of the Mercyseat Tabernacle International, Bariga, Lagos, of which he was a panelist.

The event, with the theme: My dream, had the panelists answer questions from women, men and youths on issues such as business, career, finance, marriage, among others.

On how youths can succeed, Echefulachukwu said there is no shortcut to hard work.

“Youth must development the quality of hardwork. They also need to begin to think about how they can contribute to national development from their little corners.

“Many tend to focus on what the state can provide, but there is little focus on impact-making.

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“What can you do in your little corner? The development of this country cannot be driven by the government alone.

“Individually, we must contribute to drive the desired development that we need in this country.

“You have two people: the leadership and the followership. If the followership is not effective, the leadership will have a problem,” he said.

The lawyer urged youth to acquire leadership traits and exhibit them wherever we are, including by holding government accountable.

“That’s the best way to prepare for tomorrow,” he said.

Other panelists included financial experts, career woman and entrepreneurs, including Mrs Olushola Ngofa, Dr.Titi Fowokan, Alozie Louis, Enoh Ubona.

They spoke on the need to make sacrifices to make dreams a reality, but emphasised the need not to sacrifice principles in a bid to succeed at all cost.

Fowokan said: “You need sacrifice to succeed in life. No dream can be actualised without some form of sacrifice.”

She added: “Make up your mind to set a pace that is attractive. All you need is focus and hard work. Focus on making impact. Ask God to take you through the path of problem solving.”

Youths were also urged not focus on making money, but on making positive impact on others.

The married ones were encouraged to ensure that their dreams aligned with those of their spouses, all of which should be discussed before marriage.

Insightful Ladies Forum Founder Mrs Sandra Momah said the talkshow was organised to inspire women and youth.

“The objective of the Forum is to empower ladies to be leaders. This is the sixth edition. In empowering ladies we also need the men. We come up with topics that cut across both gender.

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“Women need the support of men. We want to see women take their rightful place in life – in terms of career, marriage and in building the society.

“As women, we have a lot to offer the society, but sometimes because of the environment and the way we’re brought up, some ladies tend to sit at home.

“A woman’s vision should not just be to get married. You can give a lot to the family, community and society. We have a lot that we can offer,” she said.

Momah said the programme has inspired a lot of participants to pursue their dreams and realise them.

According to her, participants are assigned to mentors to help them succeed in their various endeavours.

Source: By Joseph Jibueze

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