By News Investigators – Edo State Government has put modalities in place to clear salaries arrears owed by immediate past local government administration in the State.
Severn out of the 18 councils are still indebted to their workers ranging from 6 to 9 months, the seven indebted Councils are Oredo, Egor, Orhionmwon, Uhunmwonde, Esan west, Esan North East and Etsako West.
At a meeting with the Commissioner for Local Government and Community Affairs, Jimoh Ijegbai and Chairmen of the councils, Edo State Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu told Council chairmen the Governor’s resolve to clear the backlog.
“Mr. Governor has insisted that this salary backlog must be cleared, I called you to discuss and agree on how this dept will be liquidated.”
In a statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary, office of the Deputy Governor, Comrade Ebomhiana Musa, Mr. Shuaib said “the salary backlog profile inherited by these councils are Egor (9 months amounting to #400m), Uhunmwonde ( 7 months amounting to #172m), Orhionmwon (6 months amounting to #301m), Esan West (6 months amounting to #280m), Esan North East (7 months amounting to #36m) and Etsako west (6 months amounting to #233m).However, the level of Oredo Council indebtedness could not be ascertained at the meeting due to absence of the Chairman.
The council Chairmen hinted of plans by the ALGON to embark on strike over the salary arrears. But the Deputy Governor quickly cut in saying that “government is waiting for them, if they want to dialogue with us, we are ready if its strike, we are equally ready to face them. We are not going to shy away from the fact that they colluded with politicians to create this mess in our councils”
The meeting finally arrived at a tight and feasible work plan whereby the salary backlog will be liquidated before end of the year with each local government having peculiar payment schedule
The Deputy Governor however warned that the dedicated IGR account is not meant for salaries, adding that it’s strictly for projects that will bringing developments to the grassroots “For now, you must not embark on any project except it is income generating and this must be scrutinized and get approval of Mr. Governor,” Shaibu added