Thursday, 21 May 2015

NIGERIAN NEWS: Unpaid wage comment: You’re ignorant, Aregbesola tells ex-HOS

The Osun State Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, has said a former Head of Service in the state, Mr. Segun Akinwusi, demonstrated his ignorance of public finance by blaming him (the governor) for the state’s inability to pay workers their monthly salaries.

The governor, through his media aide, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, issued a statement to react to Akinwusi’s claim that Aregbesola’s financial recklessness was responsible for the inability of the state to pay its workforce for over six months.
The statement read, “Akinwusi, as usual, demonstrated once again that he lacks basic knowledge of public finance despite serving at the topmost level of his career before retirement.
“Where does the former Head of Service place the verdict by the Debt Management Office under the PDP-led Federal Government which stated last year that Osun’s debt did not exceed what the state could cope with?
“It is not unexpected for the likes of Mr. Akinwusi to want to score cheap popularity and political points with issues of delayed salaries. But his reasons for the delay are wide off the mark for any intelligent rationalisation.
“As Head of Service who had the grace of enjoying Aregbesola’s large heart till his retirement age, has he forgotten that right-thinking people would demand from him what was his contribution to issues (relating to) such loans and bonds before he exited the service?”
The media aide said that the governor had run a very prudent administration, raising Osun from a prostrate financial state when he came in to one with an enviable economic status.
He added that the feat in the area of “financial engineering enabled his government to record the tremendous, life-changing achievements which Osun people can point to today.
“That the national revenue crisis has forced Osun to join states with delayed salaries does not obliterate the facts of his achievements in virtually all the sectors of the state’s life.”
Meanwhile, the Osun State Association of Medical and Dental Officers has said that the association has not reached any agreement with Aregbesola over their unpaid salaries.
The association said this in a statement signed in Osogbo on Wednesday by its Chairman and Secretary, Dr. Isiaka Adekunle and Dr. Oloyede Subair respectively.
The leaders of the association said they did not deny holding several meetings with the state government adding that the meetings centered only on the welfare of their members.
The statement partly read, “The statement by the government spokesman in reaction to NMA’s appeal to the state to re-evaluate its priorities in the disbursement of resources was not only divisive but also false.
“We had no pact with the state over the unpaid salaries. The breakdown of our unpaid salaries is as follows; 60 per cent November, December, January, February, March, April and now May salaries.
“There is no hidden place for the state government over the issue of non-payment of salaries of workers. We are calling on Mr. Rauf Aregbesola-led government to show more commitment to payment of all the seven months arrears of salaries to its workers and pensioners.”
However, Okanlawon denied issuing any divisive statement while reacting to the doctors’ statement.
He said, “The last time we spoke on OSAMDO, all we said was that the state government and OSAMDO, which represents NMA members, have been having fruitful discussions. It is also good to make useful references to information already in circulation.
“A simple reference to the statement issued when the NMA wrote its open letter to the governor would have clarified such a misinformation.”
He said that the governor would continue to make workers’ welfare his priority, adding that the end of the problem was near.
SOURCE: punchng