Buhari Approves Another Bailout For States To Offset Salary, Pension Arrears

Buhari made the announcement during a special appearance at Thursday's National Economic Council, NEC
Buhari made the announcement during a special appearance at Thursday’s National Economic Council, NEC

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the release of more funds from the London-Paris Club refund to state Governors across the country.

The President gave the directive to the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, and the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Godwin Emefiele during a special appearance at Thursday’s National Economic Council, NEC, meeting.

Buhari, however, insisted that in spending the money, priority should be placed on offsetting unpaid salary arrears as well as pension and gratuity liabilities.

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“I will not rest until I address those issues that affect our people. One of these basic things is the issue of salaries.

“It is most important that workers are able to feed their families, pay rent and school fees, then other things can follow,” President Buhari was quoted as saying in a statement by his spokesperson, Garba Shehu.

Buhari also praised the State Governors who were in attendance at the meeting for the unity of the governors’ forum.

He also thanked them for their display of “love and respect” to him. The president acknowledged the efforts made by the Governors to visit him during his medical vacation in London, but added that he deliberately preferred them to stay back and cater for their respective states.

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“I didn’t want government to move to London. I wanted it to remain here and I am glad it did,” he said.

Buhari insisted that he would remain relentless in the pursuit of the interest of ordinary Nigerians as a way of showing his gratitude to the people who “had given so much to me.”

“I was overwhelmed by the celebration of my return all across the country,” he said.

Chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum, Abdul-Aziz Yari of Zamfara State, promised on behalf of his colleagues, to keep supporting President Buhari’s policies and actions in the best interest of the nation.

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Governors of Imo, Akwa-Ibom, Osun and Abia States also thanked the President for coming to the aid of state governments through the release of the first tranche of the London-Paris Club refunds and called for urgency in the release of the second one.

They also commended Buhari for the trust he reposed in the Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo, and allowing him act on his behalf while he was away.