Contrary to insinuations by the Osun Peoples Democratic Party PDP that the Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has diverted the bailout loan to finance contracts, the National President, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Aliyu Wabba has said that the Osun bailout loan is intact.
Comrade Wabba made this disclosure while speaking with journalists shortly after the union and other labour leaders met behind closed doors with the governor in his office in Osogbo.
The NLC boss stated that NLC and other leaders who had come on a fact-finding mission have confirmed that Governor Aregbesola has no intention to divert the bailout funds on any project in the state as speculated in by the opposition.
Wabba described the allegation as misleading and unfounded, stating that Osun government and labour leaders have come to a common ground on how the bailout funds would be disbursed for the payment of backlog of workers’ salary.
He said the union and the state government have agreed to set up a five-man committee to oversee and work on the improvement of the state Internally Generated Revenue in order to prevent the state from future economic problem.
Speaking on the progress made by the meeting, he noted that the state government has agreed to pay the backlog of salaries from the bailout loan it received.
He added the delay in payment of the bailout by Osun government was occasioned by concern on the sustainability of the state resources to continuously meet up with the payment of workers’ salary after the bailout loan had been expended for the purpose it was meant for.
The NLC boss stressed that the union has assured the governor of its support in boosting the state IGR so as to make the state to meet up with its recurrent and capital expenditure as well as other commitments.
According to him, “I want to make it clear to the whole world that Governor Aregbesola has no intention whatsoever to divert the bailout funds for the execution or completion of any project in the state as he is ready to use the money for the payment of workers’ salary arrears.
“We have reached a fruitful and workable ground with Mr. Governor on how the backlog salaries of our members would be paid.
“Our union has comprehensively discussed with Mr. Governor on how the state IGR would be exponentially elevated so as for the state to meet with all its engagements as the governor envisaged largely on the sustainability of the state workforce in terms of salary payment”,
Comrade Wabba noted.
Speaking on the position of the state government towards the resolutions made at the meeting, he stressed that the governor was bordered by the state of the nation’s economy which he said has negatively affected the allocation received by the state.
Wabba said that Aregbesola was of the opinion that unless the state IGR is improved, the state would be incapable to settling the bills of her workforce. Comrade Wabba said the union has come to realize the position of the state government on the need for all the stakeholders in the state to work collectively at blocking all leakages and as well increase the state IGR.