Benue workers protest against missing names on pay vouchers
Over one hundred Local government employees in Benue State whose names were expunged from the local government pay vouchers have staged a protest to the State House of Assembly demanding their reinstatement.
The protesters had matched through major streets of Makurdi metropolis carrying placards bearing several inscriptions like,
‘We are not ghost workers, ‘we were genuinely employed, ‘pay us our dues,’ etc.
Addressing the Speaker and other house members, leader of the group, Emmanuel Iorlumum said they were duly employed in various local governments following approval given by the Benue State Government in 2011, adding that appointment letters were given to them and they signed acceptance forms and submitted same to Director General Service and Administration of their local councils.
According to Iorlumum, the Bureau of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affair staff verification exercise also captured them in its biometric verification in 2014.
His words: “We have gone through series of screening throughout our stay in the local governments with good records in the service.”
“We started receiving our monthly salaries from 2011. Even this present administration continued with the payment right from its inception without complaints. Our bank statement and local government vouchers can attest to that. The Benson Abounu Emergency Committee on Salary Issues even captured the staff employed in 2011.”
They expressed disappointment over the manner the Special Adviser to Governor Samuel Ortom on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affair Mr. Titus Zam on the 13th March, 2018 issued directive to the 23 local government chairmen to expunge their names from the various pay vouchers without stating their offences.
The protesters appealed to the Speaker to prevail on the Special Adviser for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affair as well as the Benue State Government against deleting their names on the local government pays vouchers.
Responding to the protesters grievance, the Speaker Hon. Terkimbir Ikyange frowned at the ambiguity that has shrouded payment of salary in the State, averring that the House is carrying out verification to ascertain the true position of the issue with a view to correcting the anomalies.
Local government staff in the State are owed over 11 month salaries.
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