Benue state Governor, Samuel Ortom has said he is owing local government workers only 9 months salaries.
He said this in response to criticism over an award conferred on him by Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees, NULGE, during its 40th anniversary celebration in Abuja.
In a press statement released by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Tever Akase, the Governor said the award was not based on salaries but as one of the first Governors to support local government autonomy.
“NULGE in their letter nominating the Governor for the award, clearly stated that he was to be honoured as one of the first Governors to support local government autonomy.
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“The issue of local government staff being owed salaries for 14 months is also fallacious. Since the beginning of 2018, the Ortom administration has paid salaries of all categories of workers in the state. What is being owed are nine months arrears of local government staff in 2017.
“It is also erroneous to keep stating that the bailout and Paris Club refunds were enough to clear salary arrears, pensions and gratuities when the N69 billion debt inherited was far higher than all the interventions put together.” He said in part.