NGO to Bayelsa Government: Clear backlog of workers’ salaries with second tranche of Paris Club refund

Posted by News Express | 25 March 2017 | 2,501 times

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A Non-Governmental Organisation, (NGO), the Patriotic Citizens of Nigeria (PACON), has urged the Bayelsa Government to use its share of the expected second tranche of the Paris Club refund to clear the backlog of salaries of civil servants in the state.

PACON also called on the government in the same to promptly release the local government share of the fund to enable them pay backlogs of salaries which ranged from six months to 12 months.

The NGO offered the advice on Thursday via a statement released to newsmen in Yenagoa and signed by Mr Aluzu Augustine and Mr Powedei, Arch-Convener and Co-Convener of the NGO.

It noted that the government had been constantly hiding under economic recession to deny workers their wages and pay them half salaries.

“It is worrisome that only Bayelsa State Government is backward in terms of salary payment compared to her counterparts in the south-south region, despite her huge resources and allocations.

“It is on record that the N14.5 billion that came into the state some months ago as a result of the first disbursement of the Paris Club refunds could not be effectively and convincingly accounted for by the Bayelsa State Government.

“We urge the government to put on a human face and pay all salary arrears in other to alleviate the untold hardship presently militating against workers and indeed inhabitants of the state,” the group stated.

The Bayelsa Government and its workforce held divergent views on the current salary arrears, Mr Daniel Iworiso-Markson, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Dickson, had put the arrears at three months.

But Mr Tari, Dounana, Chairman of Bayelsa chapter of Trade Union Congress (TUC) and his Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) counterpart, Mr John Ndiomu, are unanimous that Bayelsa workers are owed six months salary.

“The facts,” Dounana said, “are there and we cannot be lying on issues like this. I can be quoted on this; workers are having salary arrears of six months and we met with government on this issue only last week.

“It is likely that those claiming that we are not being owed do not have the details, we met with the government finance team and they set up a committee to work out the payment plan.”

Source: News Express

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