Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday expressed concern over the non-payment of salaries by state governments, in spite of interventions by Federal Government.
Buhari assured that the Federal Government and state executives would work closely towards ameliorating the situation of workers across the country.
Speaking with the delegation of Nigerian Governors’ Forum, NGF, led by its Chairman, Abdul’ Aziz Abubakar Yari, at the Presidential Villa Abuja, the president noted that the plight of working in the states needed urgent attention as many could barely survive.
According to Buhari, “How can anyone go to bed and sleep soundly when workers have not been paid their salaries for months.
“I actually wonder how the workers feed their families, pay their rents and even pay school fees for their children.”
The president told the governors that “two out of the three-pronged focus of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to secure the country and fight corruption had received some commendable reviews by the people”, noting that the “challenge in payment of salaries in states had taken a toll on the people.”
“God has been merciful in hearing the prayers of his servants so the rainy season has been good, you can ask the Kebbi State governor on this, and our enormous food importation bill has gone down ,” he added.
Buhari also directed all government agencies to comply with Treasury Single Account (TSA) in order to ensure more transparency and prudence in accounting for the revenues of the government and the sharing of entitlements with states.
In his remark, Yari said the various interventions by the Federal Government, which include the bailouts, were judiciously utilized by the states, stressing that the governors inherited backlog of unpaid salaries and huge debts portfolios on assumption of office.
“We are concerned with the situation in our states, and we are trying our best to manage the resources,” he said.
Yari noted that the bailout funds, and part of the fallout from the London Paris Club that had been received by the states, were properly expended to alleviate the plight of workers, but more had to be done
The NGF chairman commended the efforts of the President in improving the economy, assuring that the states would continue working with the Federal Government to improve the livelihood of workers and all Nigerians.