BEFORE THE STATE OF EMERGENCY ON SALARIES IN BENUE STATE - TERSOO - Snazzy.com.ng https://nairapp.com/index.php?rp=6751

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BEFORE THE STATE OF EMERGENCY ON SALARIES IN BENUE STATE - TERSOO

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BEFORE THE STATE OF EMERGENCY ON SALARIES IN BENUE STATE .....
It was reported yesterday that Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State declared a state of emergency on salaries. The news received diverse reactions, some justifying the declaration while others kicking against it. Perhaps, state of emergency on salaries is strange to many, but it is one of the heavy political pronouncements to get the people thinking. In simple terms, state of emergency on salaries means the government will now prioritise payment of salaries to workers. This should have been commendable if such a move was taken in the first place.
Coming at a time close to local government elections in the state, one is tempted to think that the declaration is rather another antic to influence the people's choice of officials at the polls.
It can be argued that the number one problem of the state is non payment of salaries. Former Governor Suswam lost his Senatorial election in 2015 largely due to the fact that he owed workers salaries for many months. He had the executive powers to deny workers their hard earned wages just as the workers waited for him with their PVCs to decide his fate during the 2015 elections. This was to the advantage of Governor Ortom who promised to pay workers their salaries if elected. The workers believed him and for about two years, he has been Governor. Unfortunately, he has not kept his promise to the workers despite collecting monies from many sources including Federal Allocation, borrowings, IGR and Paris Club. Certainly, lessons have not been learnt. Let me say again that, declaration of state of emergency in the beginning of the administration, for me, would have been more like it than now. Let me also say that, no time is late as it is said "it's better late than never". The terms of reference appear to be what the administration has done in the past without head way because, there has been no sincerity of purpose. Verification has been carried out to fish out ghost workers but no way.
The state of emergency committee is made up of people who have been part and parcel of the government. Is it by state of emergency nomenclature that they will demonstrate sincerity? May be. But, before declaring state of emergency on salaries, one expected the government to give account of funds it has got from all the sources mentioned above and how these funds have been applied. This, I think should be the beginning of finding a solution to the salary nightmare. I just hope the committee will not throw back at the Governor their assignment the way the stakeholders forum did sometime ago? Let us also remember that, it wasn't only in Benue that the present administration inherited backlog of salaries. But some states have come out it based on transparent and accountable governance, not state of emergency.


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