Posted on Tue 13 Aug 2019, 02:17 PM

The Abia state Commissioner for Information, Chief John Kalu, has faulted claims made by the state chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress NLC Mr Uchenna Obigwe.

He says that  Obigwe was either ignorant of laws by the state House of Assembly or he is playing politics with workers’ salaries.

In his words “According to existing laws made by the state House of Assembly, the state government does not pay workers in state parastatals as the management of those parastatals are permitted by law to make, retain and use their revenue to pay their workers as and when due.

“State parastatals also do not remit any portion of their revenue to the state government’s consolidated revenue account unlike the MDAs. Rather, the state government provides support to parastatals from time to time through the payment of subventions, which are not necessarily meant to be used for salary payments.

“If organised labour, led by Obigwe, is asking the state government to directly pay salaries of workers in parastatals, then they should be bold enough to approach the state House of Assembly to amend the relevant laws to ensure that such parastatals remit their revenues to the state coffers so the state can assume full responsibility for paying workers in those parastatals.

“It is on record that this administration has made several interventions to help pay parastatals workers, including paying workers of ABSUTH 11 months’ salary arrears in 2015, payment of N2 billion debt of Abia Poly, payment of months of subventions to all the ailing parastatals in the state among others.”
The minister however, acknowledged that “we have unpaid salaries with secondary school teachers.

It is important to state that it is not true that they have continuously not been paid since October 2018.

In December 2018, February, March, May and June 2019, when they received two months’ arrears, we verifiably made payments to secondary school teachers.

“It is also important to note that it is only in Abia that the state government pays junior and secondary school teachers.”


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