The Kebbi State Governor, Alhaji Atiku Bagudu, has approved the immediate payment of N3 billion gratuity arrears to all verified retirees of the state and local government areas.
The approval was contained in a statement signed by the state Commissioner of Finance, Alhaji Ibrahim Muhammad-Augie, and made available to newsmen in Birnin Kebbi on Thursday.
The statement said that over N2 billion had been approved for the state government verified retirees, while N1 billion was approved for local government councils and local government education authorities (LGEAs).
“All necessary processes for electronic payment to all categories of the affected beneficiaries, on a very favourable equitable ratio, has already been put into motion.
“It will be recalled that, in May, 2020, the sum of N2.403 billion arrears of gratuity was paid to all categories of verified retirees across the state ,local governments and local government education authorities.
“From inception of this Government, to date, therefore, a total sum of N20. 052 billion was approved and paid as arrears of gratuities to the state and local government retirees of the state,” the statement quoted Augie as saying.
The statement added that the state was among the elite states that paid both salaries and pensions regularly, without any outstanding arrears from 2015 to date.
“This government has always held the welfare of its citizens, including the state civil and public servants, in high esteem. We must remind ourselves that the resources at the disposal of government to execute necessary economic and social development demands, in relation to revenues, is highly challenged , more so, under the current scourge of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Government cannot, in all sincerity, effectively attend to all the demands on the lean resources available.
“We, therefore, call on all our citizens, particularly those better informed about the circumstances of the world, the sub-national and the Federal Government, to be rational and selfless in demands they put on Governments.
“Times like this call for prudence and self-discipline and we must all agree to the necessity to prioritize state expenditures to areas that can best uplift our society from poverty.
“We are happy that, Kebbi State has become a beacon of hope for wealth creation, through development of Agriculture and also an abode of peace and harmony, to the envy of other states in the Federation.
“The Ministry of Finance wishes all our retirees a healthy and prosperous new year,” the statement said.