Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State has ordered the payment of all debts including salary arrears, allowances and entitlements owed workers in the state.
Ugwuanyi gave the directive in Enugu on Thursday during a rally organised by the state chapter of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC).
The debts include N83.3 million being outstanding refund from workers contribution into the National Housing Fund (NHF) that was not remitted between 2000 and 2004.
Others are salary arrears of 18 months owed some staff of Enugu State Waste Management Agency (ESWAMA) and 13th month salary promised state government agencies in 2017.
The rest are the implementation of the Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) for workers in the health sector.
Ugwuanyi ordered the relevant offices responsible for the implementation of the payment to forward memos to the effect to the State Executive Council for consideration.
He said that all debts owed to workers in government agencies would be paid on three installments.
The governor said that workers in ESWAMA that were not captured as ministry workers would be given opportunity for the verification from May 1.
He said that his administration would give attention to all concerns and issues raised by the labour leaders.
He described the rally as ‘amazing’ adding that it was the first time workers in the state would be endorsing a sitting governor.
Ugwuanyi said that he was committed to enthrone good governance in the state.
Earlier in an address of welcome, the NLC Chairman, Mr Virginus Nwobodo , said that the rally was in support of good governance in the state.
Nwobodo said that the congress was happy with the regular payment of workers’ salaries and allowances for pensioners.
He appealed for the payment of arrears of salaries and gratuities owed agencies of government as well as attends to the plights of those yet to be absorbed into ministries.
Also, the TUC Chairman, Mr Chukwuma Igbokwe, said that workers in the state were partners in progress to the state government.
Igbokwe said that the style of governance championed by Ugwuanyi was all embraced, adding that “we no longer know the difference between government and opposition.
“There have been peace and security in the state and the workers are happy for that,” Igbokwe said.
Our correspondent reports that the highlight of the event was a motion of endorsement of the governor for the 2019 election moved by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr Gabriel Ajah.