The 36 governors have resolved to pay backlog of salaries and pension as soon as the next tranche of Paris-London Club loan refunds are made.
This decision was arrived at in Abuja at a meeting hosted on Thursday night by the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum and governor of Zamfara State, Alhaji Abdulaziz Yari Abubakar.
The governors met in anticipation of the release of the other half of the Paris-London Club refund.
The money has been gratuitously approved for payment by Acting President Yemi Osibanjo.
The funds are expected to hit the states accounts within the month.
The governors are not oblivious of the hue and cry over the non-payment of the backlog of salaries and pension and the precarious predicament of the Nigerian workers.
The deliberated on the matter and concluded that in order to set the country on the path of growth, something immediate should be done to ameliorate workers’ plight by offsetting the backlog of their pay and emoluments.
“We all agreed that a substantial amount from the next tranche of the Paris-London refunds be used in the settlement of workers salary and pension arrears,” Abubakar said.
Out of the N522.74 billion owed, N388.304 was paid to states last December.
Similarly, the governors committed to the verification of the input of all the consultants who claim to be working towards the harmonization of the refunds regarding what is due to which state, since 2005 when the demand for the refunds commenced.
At the moment, there are litigations from more than ten different consultants still agitating for settlement for their roles in the quest to have the refunds made to states.
In this regard, a committee was set up under the headship of Governor Femi Akeredolu of Ondo state.
Members are the governors of Bauchi, Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar; Sokoto’s Aminu Waziri Tambuwal; Plateau’s Simon Lalong; Bayelsa’s Seriaki Dickson; Rivers’ Nyesom Wike and former Accountant General of the Federation and Gombe state governor, Ibrahim Dankwambo.
This committee is expected to finally provide a solution to the demands by consultants on the Paris-London Club refunds to states.
The forum also resolved to work harmoniously in a manner that would transcend all political affiliations so that all governors would speak with one voice on issues of national importance.
To achieve this a committee made up of the Governors of Imo, Bayelsa, Abia, Ekiti, Kano, Nasarawa and Bauchi was constituted to work for the “reconciliation of the forum and the betterment of the country.”