…Expends N9.3bn on pensions and gratuities owed by previous administration***
Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State assured Nigeria on Wednesday, that his administration will always accord priority attention, to workers’ welfare, in the state.
Makinde made the pledge during an Inter-Faith Service organised for civil/public servants to usher in the New Year. The service was held at the state Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan.
The governor, who said the inter-faith service was to show gratitude to God for the gift of life in spite of the myriad of challenges that faced the nation in 2020, reiterated his commitment to improving the living standard of workers.
“We heard some people wondering in 2020 if we will continue paying salaries promptly, given the hardship occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic meltdown.
“Well, by the grace of God, we are not owing any salaries. We even surprised them more by paying 13th month salaries for the second time running at a time when other states are owing their workers,” he said.
The governor also said that his government had spent about N9.3 billion to pay pensions and gratuities owed by the previous administration so far and promised to continue paying to clear up the backlog.
He promised to address the backlog of outstanding promotions from 2016 in the New Year, adding that deserving civil servants would have the opportunity to get up to grade level 17 during his tenure.
Makinde further assured the people of the state that his administration remains unwavering in the resolve to continue serving them and put their interests first.
He made it known that some of the various projects started in 2020 by his administration would be inaugurated in the New Year.
“For example, the 65kms Moniya-Ijaiye-Iseyin road will be commissioned this year.
“Also lined up for commissioning are the 21kms Airport- Ajia-New Ife express road with a spur to Amuloko, the 12kms Apete-Awotan-Akufo road, the 3kms Under G Stadium-LAUTECH-2nd Gate road and the 5kms Gedu-Oroki-Sabo-Asipa road in Oyo town.
“Others are the 12.5kms dueling of Challenge-Odo Ona Elewe-Apata road and the 10kms Saki township road dualisation.
“Aside all these, we will also be commissioning the remodeled Lekan Salami Sports Complex, Adamasingba, Ibadan, the four bus terminals at Iwo road, New Ife road, Challenge and Ojoo in Ibadan as well as the motorcycle and bus terminal at Agodi Gate, Ibadan.
“The Akesan market in Oyo town that was razed down by fire in January 2020 has been rebuilt and will also be commissioned this year,’’ the governor said.
On the security challenge in the state, Makinde assured all residents that his administration was on top of the situation.
In her remarks, the Head of Service, Mrs Amidat Agboola stressed the need for the workers to be dedicated to their duties.
Agboola warned against all forms of misconduct such as docility, nonchalant attitude, lateness to work, truancy and disloyalty.
According to her, the present administration is poised to recognising meritocracy and only workers who distinguish themselves will be given due recognition.
The Head of Service also appreciated the governor for giving approval for the reinstatement of more than 900 dismissed staff in the state civil/public service by previous administrations.
She disclosed that the affected staff had been placed back on the nominal roll, adding that those with favorable court judgements were negotiating on payment of arrears of salaries due to them.
Agboola said that the reinstatement was a demonstration that Makinde believed in fair hearing, equity and justice.
She further commended all government appointees in the present administration, both political and technocrats for their collaborative effort with the civil/public servants in the state.
Highlights of the occasion was a prayer session presided over by Bishop Ademola Moradeyo, the Chairman, Oyo State Pilgrims Welfare Board (Christian wing) and Ahmadu-Rufai Bello, the Chief Imam of Oyo State Government House.