Some Governors Have Misappropriated Bailout Funds - NLC
The National President of the Nigeria Labour Congress(NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba, on Thursday, accused some unnamed governors of misappropriating the bailout funds released by the federal government to settle outstanding payment of workers salaries and pension.
But the Bauchi State Governor, Mohammed Abubakar, has called on the Nigeria Labour Congress(NLC) to assist his administration in flushing out ghost workers by supporting the on-going worker's verification exercise.
The NLC National President, who made this allegation on Thursday when he led a delegation of the leadership of the union on a courtesy visit to Bauchi State Governor, Abubakar, at the Government House in Bauchi, lamented that the funds were diverted in some states.
He said that investigations by the Independent Corrupt Practice and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) revealed that some state governments did not utilize the bail out judiciously, thus creating the problem of backlog of outstanding salaries in those states.
"The bail out fund given by the federal government was meant to cushion the effect of outstanding salaries and pension, but sadly some States did not utilise these funds as they were diverted for other uses by some state governments.
"These funds are public funds and they must be accounted for. We are all aware of the current challenges poised by the state of economy and when we put money in the hands of state governments, we expect that the economies of those states should kick start.
"State governments must ensure the prompt payment of workers salaries because there is a connect between payment of workers salary and the progress of the economy," he said.
He urged the state governor to make the payment of worker's salaries a priority in his administration, saying that the measure will mitigate social vices in the state.
Wanna commended the state government for re-engaging the disengaged teachers sacked by the previous administration in the state and settling all their entitlements.
In his remarks, the Bauchi State Governor, Abubakar, appealed to the Nigeria Labour Congress,(NLC) to assist his government in flushing out ghost workers by supporting the on-going worker's verification exercise.
Abubakar also told the State Council of the NLC to support his government in fishing out perpetrators of ghost workers in the civil service, stressing that his government will not embark on deliberate reduction of the work force.
" It is so alarming today that Bauchi State has a work force of 106,000 and i feel it is artificial because of the syndrome of ghost worker phenomenon.
"Fishing out ghost workers is the strongest way of maintaining the continuous payment of salaries, so I urge the state chapter of the NLC to assist me in carrying out this task," Abubakar said
The governor however lamented how some entrenched interest groups in the state blackmailed his efforts at conducting the ongoing verification exercise for workers because they were benefiting immensely from the ghost worker syndrome.
"It was disheartening to discover that these group of persons were making brisk business from ghost workers because monthly they take away one billion naira, but I was not distracted", he said.
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