By Dipo Olowookere
Oyo State government has approved the payment of April and May 2017 salaries for workers in the state.
The salaries are to be paid from the refunded second tranche Paris Club Fund and June released monthly allocation from the Federal Government.
It was disclosed that the Governor, Mr Abiola Ajimobi, approved the payment of the two months’ salaries to the workers.
Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Toye Arulogun, said on Thursday that about 72 percent of the N7.9 billion Paris Club fund was committed to the salaries and salary related payment, at both the state and local government levels to abate the salaries irregularities of council workers.
Mr Arulogun further said that despite President Muhammad Buhari’s directive that at least 50 percent of the Paris Club refunds should be committed to the payment of the salaries of workers in the states, Governor Ajimobi approved over 50 percent of the fund to settle salaries and salary related.
He pointed out that the Oyo state government has paid two months salaries four times in the last 7months, expressing optimism that the government would soon be free from owing workers’ salaries.
According to him, “our government is committed to the well-being and welfare of the people of the state. We have said it many times that the leadership of the state is not happy with the situation of workers in the state and has never not relented in its efforts to correcting the anomaly. The Governor is consistent in reiterating his commitment to permanently resolving the issue of outstanding workers salaries.
“Before the financial crisis in the country, we used to pay on or before 25th of every month. Workers also received a 300 percent increase in salaries between 2011 and 2015. We strongly believe and are committed to getting back to the rosy days. We will all recall that the governor said at the 2017 inter faith service in January that the state will survive this period. As at then, we were owing workers in the state about six month salaries.
“It should be noted that with the payment of April and May salaries, we will be owing workers in the state only June Salary and by extension July in some days’ time. The prophecy is already coming to pass and we believe that everything will soon be back to normal as we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
“We appeal to the people of the state to bear with us and continue to support our administration. We will continue to strive to fulfil our electoral promises and improve the quality of life for the citizenry in Oyo state. We do not politick or politicize people’s welfare,” Mr Arulogun stressed.
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