BREAKING NEWS: Abia Govt to Clear 16.5 Billion Naira Salary Arrears Through Installments

The Abia State Government has announced a strategic plan to clear N16.5 billion in salary arrears owed to civil service workers through installments, aiming to maintain financial stability and sustained economic growth.

In a decisive effort to address outstanding financial obligations, the Abia State Government revealed a comprehensive plan to pay off N16.5 billion in salary arrears owed to civil service workers in installments. This important announcement was made by the Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Mike Akpara, during a press conference in Umuahia on Tuesday.

Akpara noted the administration’s commitment to resolving salary debts, making emphasis that “a worker deserves his wages.” He pointed out that the current administration inherited substantial debts from previous governments, specifically a N16.5 billion debt owed to employees in state-owned educational institutions.

“To stimulate the state’s economy, we need to improve the circulation of money,” Akpara said. He unveiled the government’s determination to clear these arrears while also making progress in other economic sectors.

The commissioner revealed that the repayment of these arrears would begin by “July or August” with the target of completing payments by the end of the year. He mentioned that the debts include salaries owed to employees of Abia State University (ABSU), College of Education Arochukwu, College of Health Sciences, Abia State Polytechnic Aba, and Abia State University Teaching Hospital.

The commissioner revealed that the government has already made progress by paying the salary arrears for April and May to workers at ABSU. He explained that previous administrations had accrued the mountainous debts, including 33 months of unpaid salaries at Abia Polytechnic, 22 months at the College of Education Arochukwu, and 11 months at Abia State University. Other institutions, including the Hospital Management Board, were also heavily owed.

In response to public criticism, Akpara defended Governor Alex Otti, urging residents to support the government’s policies and programs. He Clarified that the current administration has not applied for any new loans since taking office and has been managing its finances prudently.

He acknowledged that loan requests initiated by the previous administration with the Africa Development Bank and Islamic Development Bank are still being processed, saying that the current government is completing these processes because “government is a continuum.”

Akpara assured that the administration is committed to conducting verification exercises to maintain order and efficiency within the civil service. “We will continue to dedicate ourselves to the good works that the state requires to ensure that the people receive the dividends of democracy,” he concluded.

This strategic approach by the Abia State Government aims to ensure financial stability while gradually addressing substantial salary arrears, thereby maintain continuous economic growth and stability.