The Imo State Governor Emeka Ihedioha paid the backlog of 80 months pension arrears of 24, 409 pensioners to show how things can be done differently in the administration of the state, and not for politics, the coalition for the Advancement of Good Governance (CAGG) has said. The National Convener, CAGG, James Okoronkwo, said this in Abuja at a news conference.
He also said the 24, 409 pensioners paid were out of the 25, 430 total and that the remaining 340 are yet to be paid because of invalid BVN, and another 286 because of wrong banking details.
“A summary of all pensioners of the 27 local governments shows that payments have started not only for Imo State indigenes but also those that were seconded from their state, did a transfer, or were not originally from Imo State but are employed by the Imo State Government,” Okoronkwo said.
He said the organisation was not unmindful of the impatience of Imolites to see immediate results from the government they voted for, especially now that their mandate has further been affirmed by the Court of Appeal.
Meanwhile, Governor Emeka Ihedioha, the pensioners he disclosed this at a stakeholders meeting with the Nigerian Union of pensioners, (NUP), members of the organised labour and the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Owerri, said that the verification exercise embarked by the government to ascertain the actual number and amount to be paid to the pensioners has been completed.
The governor said that he has been able to set aside over N822 million, based on the computed figures, for the payment of the pension arrears.
Ihedioha, who decried the low level of internally generated revenue in the state, however expressed delight that with the introduction of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) System, there had been a progressive rise in IGR from N241 million in June to N432 million in July, N635 million in August and N874 million in September.
The governor expressed worry at the huge salary bill of civil servants in the state, stressing that the state got last month as state allocation from Abuja is N4.5 billion and salary alone gulped N2.252 billion, which is 55 per cent of the allocation while pensions will take 17 per cent. He warned that unproductive civil servants will be sacked, while urging them to sit up and increase the state IGR.