This is coming as the state government and the organised labour held a meeting on ways of properly disbursing the 10.6 billion Naira received from the Federal Government.
The meeting between the state government and the organised labour which lasted for hours was geared towards arriving at terms of utilizing the fifty percent due to the Ministries, Departments, and Agencies, MDAs, and parastatals in the state.
Speaking to newsmen at the end of the meeting, the Nigeria Labour Congress Chairman, Abia State Chapter, Comrade Uchenna Obigwe who expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the meeting said the interest of Abia Workers was central.
Obigwe also revealed that the #500 million reserved for the payment of gratuities have been plunged into the payment of salaries especially for the most vulnerable whose salaries range from two to three thousand among the pensioners.
The Abia Labour boss, who described as unacceptable a situation where institutions like the Abia State Polytechnic, Aba, Abia State University Teaching Hospital, and Abia Line Network who are revenue generating institutions can’t pay their workers salaries, for at least three months, called for the reshuffle of the management of the affected institutions.
He expressed confidence that the committee set up by the government to tackle the issues of disbursement and others would come up with workable solutions to the payment of workers salaries.
The Trade Union Congress Chairman of the state, Comrade Christopher Okpara and Chris Okoro of the Public Service Negotiating Council, said the meeting was sacrosanct in maintaining the peace and welfare of Abia Workers.
Commissioner for Finance, Obinna Oriaku said the state government plans to ensure the payment of salaries of pensioners, MDAs and parastatals before the end of the year but must have the approval of the state House of Assembly through its appropriation.
He said the committee is expected to take a critical look at the indebtedness of the state and ways of dealing with it, to ensure adequate use of the 50 percent for payment of salaries.
Governor Okezie Ikpeazu at the meeting pledged his commitment to the welfare of civil servants in the state,while promising to be accountable to them.
He said the civil service is the wheel that drives the state and must be given the desired attention.
The Governor while describing “ghost workers ” as a major challenge called on them to join hands with his administration in identifying and flushing out the menace to aid in the sustenance of prompt payment of salaries.