By LAMINO GAMBO ISHAQ
Nasarawa State Government has expressed concern over the delay in payment of June salaries to local government workers in the state.
Secretary to the State Government, Aliyu Tijjani Ahmed stated this while briefing newsmen after a meeting with the State Governor, Engineer Abdullahi A. Sule and Chairmen of the thirteen Local Government Councils held in Government House Lafia, Monday.
Aliyu Tijjani said having complied with the Local Government autonomy law and all funds deposited into accounts of the local governments, authorities of the third tier of government were yet to pay salaries. The Governor invited the Chair men to find out the reason for the delay where he found out that insufficient funds from the federation account allocations hinderse the payment.
He maintained that if after the screening exercise to be embarked upon by the Local Governments the problem still persists, the state will look for other ways to ensure that workers at the local government level are paid their salaries.
"We are hoping that within the next few days, the Local Government Chairmen will be able to pay salaries of their staff" Tijjani said.
On his part, the ALGON Chairman and Chairman of Lafia Local Government Council, Aminu Muazu Maifata stressed that over two-third of the thirteen Local Governments in the state can not pay salaries from the available funds gotten from the federation account accruals to the various local governments hence the need to sort for workable solutions to settle workers their June salaries.
"Actually all disbursements were done and all accounts of Local Government Councils were credited with accruals as they came from the federation account allocation". Aminu Muazu stated.
Aminu Muazu said the Chairmen decided to put their heads together to resolve this issue.
"The first thing we decided to do as chairmen was to verify our wage bill with the view of identifying the real supposed wage Bills of our various Local Government Councils ".
"After that, we will come back to put our heads together and see which local governments have deficits or surplus after salaries are being computed and magnanimously our Governor, he has reasoned with us and by God's grace we will do this in the next few days and finish the verification". Aminu added.
He called on staff to be patience and co-operate as the Chairmen assured that all monies are safe and intact while also affirming that as soon as resolutions are reached, salaries will be paid.
Aminu further stated that the chairmen are aware of irregularities and are bent on correcting them in the overall interest of the workforce.
Nasarawa State has in the past shared funds in the joint account but now that a new rule or directive is on ground, things have to change.
On his part, the Special Adviser on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, John Mamman appealed to Associations and the local government workers to bear with the government as the state Governor has been restless to ensure that salaries are paid.
Lamino Gambo Ishaq is a Special Assistant
to the Governor.