- Osun Paid out N14.2bn in less than Two Weeks
Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State Tuesday said a total of N14.2billion was paid out by his government in less than two weeks before the end of December 2016.
Aregbesola stated this when the state government opened the year with supplications as the governor led Muslim and Christian faithful at an interdenominational thanksgiving session at the Government Secretariat in Osogbo.
The governor, who laced his speech with songs of praises to God in Islamic and Christian ways, said with what befell the state before the close of 2015, it was gratifying that the state bounced back in what can now be felt as relief from the hardship of last year.
He said the ability of his government to pay workers’ salaries from September, October, November and December in less than two week period was a huge relief.
The governor said it was in September 2014 that he had to call on workers to decide whether they wanted a staff reduction or payment of salaries according to available resources when the impact of the economic hardship in the country began to biter harder.
He said in July 2015, the new federal government which had been sworn in May 2015, listened to some of the solutions proffered to the national revenue crisis.
Aregbesola said when the state got N34.9billion bailout loan in 2015, there were controversies on how to disburse the funds when some people insisted that the whole funds should be spent all at once.
“But I knew that with the magnitude of the economic crisis facing Nigeria, it would have been suicidal to expend the whole bailout loan at once without saving a portion of it which eventually bailed us out till around February last year,” Aregbesola said.
The governor recalled that this was what made necessary, the constitution of the state’s Revenue Apportionment Committee headed by labour veteran Comrade Hassan Sunmonu which he said made it possible for the state to pay salaries till February of 2016.
He said the arrival of the Paris Club deductions refunds which made N11.7billion available to the state has brought some relief, noting that the state would however need to intensify its efforts towards self-sustenance.
“We are grateful that our hardships are getting over giving us indications that the new year would be better.” he added.
The governor, while expressing appreciation to workers who showed understanding, appealed to those who have not shown signs of understanding the trends..
While appealing to all stakeholders to look inward, Aregbesola charged traditional rulers to promote agriculture in their respective domain just as he appealed to them to engage in vigorous campaigns for payment of taxes.