￼SAN FRANCISCO, December 06, (THEWILL) – Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, has declared that President Muhammadu Buhari did not direct state governors to pay salary arrears before Christmas.
It was reported that the President had on November 27, in a meeting with the Governors, urged them to ensure payment of workers salaries backlog from the balance of the outstanding Paris Club refund which would soon be paid to them.
However, Ortom, in an interview with Vanguard, insisted that the President simply asked the Governors to use 50 per cent of the refund to pay salaries, not necessarily to clear all arrears.
“The fact is that on that matter, the
President is being misquoted. Mr. President didn’t say we should clear arrears of salaries,” Ortom declared.
“He said the last tranche of the fifty percent, please get it very well, the last tranche of the Paris Club refunds that was approved by him should be released to states so that civil servants too can enjoy their Christmas like every other person.
“We already have a template of what we agreed with the President and that is that when this money comes that at least a minimum of 50 percent of the amount should be used for the payment of salaries.
“That was the agreement we had. But here in Benue State each time we get it we use more than that.
“The last time we used more than 80 percent for the payment of salaries arrears, even the one that we are about to receive, we will use more than 70 percent to pay arrears. That is what we intend to do.”