Kogi: Excitement as Ododo pays June salaries


Palpable excitement enveloped Kogi State at the weekend as Governor Usman Ododo surprised the state workers by paying their June salaries in the middle of the month.

A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria is reporting that most of the workers were pleasantly surprised.

A top government official told NAN that the gesture was to enable the people to celebrate the Eid-el Kabir festival with joy.

NAN reports that the governor also distributed food items and other palliatives to the workers and other residents of the North Central state.

Some of the civil servants, who spoke to NAN, expressed appreciation to the governor for the gesture, which, they said, would help them to enjoy the Muslim festival.

“The governor’s early payment of June salaries, alongside the distribution of food palliatives to workers, is a huge blessing to us,” Hajiya Fatima Baba, a civil servant, told NAN.

Alhaji Bala Adejoh, another civil servant, who was full of praise for the governor, said that the arrival of the June salary was a “huge relief”.

Adejoh said: “It’s a great relief getting June salary to celebrate this Sallah.

“My prayer for the governor is for him to enjoy God’s grace, guidance and blessings as he rules Kogi in this trying  time.”

Ododo had, in a statement by Onogwu Muhammed, his Special Adviser on Public Relations, said that the people’s vote for “consolidation and continuity” in Kogi State was not a mistake.

According to him, before 2016, Kogi State was burdened with a bogus and ineffective civil service system with salaries always irregular.

He said: “Unfortunately, efforts to sanitise the system and ensure timely wage payments for genuine workers were hindered by lack of political will and various obstacles.

“It was the bold initiative of ex-Governor Yahaya Bello’s administration that tackled this cumbersome system.

“The civil service reform initiated by Bello’s administration was arduous and demanding for both the civil servants and the government.

“Since 2017, the government policy has ensured that workers’ salaries are paid between the 25th and 27th of every month, a policy that the current administration is sustaining.

“The civil service reform was one of the five key thematic areas of the ‘New Direction Administration’ of the previous government, focusing on education, health, agriculture and infrastructure.

“Part of the fulfillment of the promise of sustainable welfare is  paying the June salaries and pensions of workers and retirees in Kogi ahead of the Sallah celebration.”

The statement quoted the governor as saying that prompt payment of salaries and the distribution of the second quarterly food palliative to vulnerable populations was part of efforts to ensure people enjoyed the festivities with their families.

Ododo was also quoted as reassuring the people that his administration would continue to prioritise welfare of workers, pensioners and all residents.

The statement said that the reforms in the public and civil service sectors had made Kogi State one of the most attractive public employers in Nigeria.

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