From Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
Chairman of Yenagoa Local Government Area, Baylesa State, Oforji Oboku, has disclosed that the council would clear outstanding salaries from the Paris club refund once it is released.
Oboku assured the council workers that their salary backlog would be cleared once the council received its share of the Paris Club refund.
He attributed the success story of the Governor Seriake Dickson administration to its adherence to the principles of transparency and probity and said the council would follow in the footsteps of the Dickson administration to open its financial books to stakeholders.
According to him, right from his first day in office, Dickson had made it clear he would not play lip service to the issue of transparency, leading to the monthly transparency briefing that gives government income and expenditure to Bayelsans.
Oboku, who stated this during Yenagoa local government transparency briefing at the council headquarters, explained the dwindling financial resources from the federation account has slowed down developmental projects and caused the inability of the council to pay workers’ salaries.
He, however, said recent improvement in financial resources accruing to the council from the federation account would give the council the financial strength to clear outstanding workers’ salaries.
Oboku disclosed that N227,126,854,08 accrued to the council from the federation account for October, while N197,238,806,91 was spent on recurrent and capital expenditure.
Stating that N13,584,169,87 was the balance in the council’s account, he said over N8 million has been spent on the Yenezue-Gene/Biogbolo Secondary School project, while N6 million has been spent on the Akenfa iron bridge project.
Oboku, who regretted that the council has not invested in the past, so as to boost its internally generated revenue, assured the workers that his administration is committed to the improvement in their standard of living.
“I want to sincerely commend all the workers for their support and understanding. Once the other part of the Paris refund comes, we are going to clear outstanding workers’ salaries. It is sad that we have not boosted our IGR in the past, which would have help us with funds to support the money coming into the council, but the mega shops, which would be commissioned soon, would help us in that direction. This administration is taking a cue from Governor Dickson on the issue of transparency and probity and we shall continue to open our financial books for people to see,” he said.