Okorocha, Oyegun blame declining federal allocation for labour, Imo wage dispute
THE National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Oyegun and Imo State Governor, Chief Rochas Okorocha yesterday blamed the drastic shortfall in federal allocations and low internally generated revenue (IGR), for the wage dispute between the state government and the organized labour over wages.
The governor however, insisted that the protest by workers was politically motivated, revealing that to some categories of workers he was paying the highest, which included N20, 000 minimum wage against N18, 000 statutory wage and huge wages to magistrates and government lawyers for year, sacrificing his over four years security votes to fund free education and others.
The duo spoke at a press briefing held at the open field of the Government House, Owerri, with
Okorocha commending the APC’s national chairman and a former governor, Segun Oni, among others for prompt intervention to amicably resolve the industrial impasse.
The governor said the state was interested in maintaining peace and harmony, stressing that there must be clear understanding of all Imo people on the financial situations on ground.
The governor said a whopping sum of N4.2 billion was expended by the state in payment of salaries, while the state generates N1.9 billion from the Federal Allocation; Local Council, N2.2 billion, and about N400 million IGR. On the issue of 13 per cent derivation, and others, Okorocha maintained were built into the total state allocation which was hardly enough to carry the expenditure on workers’ pay.
He further disclosed that over N26 billion was received last year as bailout from the Federal Government to pay salaries, which was being deducted at source.
The governor said the state government was ready to dispense 70 per cent and not 80 per cent of earnings into the state, as Labour proposed.
He, however, warned that his headache was the health workers and doctors, whom he accused of not producing enough revenue resources. political popularity.