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Aggrieved Benue Pensioners Task Ortom On 33 Months Arrears

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Coalition of Aggrieved Pensioners in Benue State has called on the state government to direct the payment of their outstanding pensions and gratuities.

The union made this appeal, yesterday, in a rejoinder signed by its Chairman, Akosu Orban, and Secretary, Mac Mtsur, and made available to The Guardian in Makurdi.

Recently, the pensioners had protested against the non-payment of over 32 and 34 entitlements owed state and local council pensioners, even as they disclosed that they lost over 500 members to economic crunch.

But he state government had said it had agreement with the Nigerian Union of Pensioners (NUP) leaders, who are part of the Local Government Joint Account, and had been paying N700 million to pensioners in the state monthly.

Acting Press Secretary to the Governor, Nathaniel Ikyur, said out of this amount, N300 million was paid to the local council pensioners and N400 million to state pensioners.

He added: “This mode of payment has been in effect in the last six months and government intends to continue with it until we are able to stabilise the payment system.”

The aggrieved retirees, in the statement, wondered how N700 million would be released by the state government monthly as claimed by the governor, yet the number of months owed them kept rising.

Chairman of the forum intimated that out of the 33 months pension owed pensioners, only six months was inherited from the previous administration.

RELATEDLY, Ortom has raised the alarm over sharp practices at the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), where a wage bill of primary school teachers is padded.

Ortom, who expressed this at a meeting with local council chairmen, SUBEB among others, yesterday, at the New Banquet Hall of Benue Peoples House Makurdi, said, with the continuous hike in wage bills, the dead seemed to be coming to life to receive salaries.

The governor, who vowed to take decisive steps to end padding of salaries, gave the local council chairmen one month to unmask the cartel behind the padding.

If proper checks are carried out with the involvement of council chairmen, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Parent-Teacher Association (PTA), leakages and other unwholesome activities would be stopped to give room for more recruitment.

According to him, since the decision to engage 2,000 teachers in primary schools was sacrosanct, his government would do everything possible to block financial leakages in the sector to guarantee expected goal.

The Special Adviser to the Governor on Bureau of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Kenneth Achabo, presented a report on audited accounts of the 23 local councils from 2015 to 2019.

Ortom described the report as a novel initiative and stressed the need for those in positions of trust to keep financial records straight, to support auditors with facts and figures to do their job.

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Breaking: Saraki’s Cousin, Ex-Kwara Commissioner, Moronfoye Re-arraigned for Money Laundering, Contract Scam

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The aides to Governor Abubakar Bukola Saraki were today re-arraigned at the Ilorin Zonal Command of the EFCC on charges bordering on abuse of office, diversion of public funds and money laundering..

Ope Saraki, a cousin to former Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, and a former Commissioner for Information in Kwara State, Olatunji Oyeyemi Moronfoye, were re-arraigned on separate charges before Justice Muhammed Sani of the Federal High Court, Ilorin.

The case, which first geared on May 13, 2015 before Justice A. O. Faji of the Federal High Court, Ilorin has suffered series of setbacks occasioned by transfer of trial judges.

Ope Saraki, as the Senior Special Assistant on Millennium Development Goals, MDGs, allegedly received a cash payment of N11,180,000.00 (Eleven Million, One Hundred and Eighty Thousand Naira) from one Kunle Adimula, a sum which exceeded the cash amount payable to an individual.

Similarly, Moronfoye while being the Special Adviser on Millennium Development Goals, MDGs, allegedly committed procurement fraud by means of unlawful influence in the award of two contracts involving renovation of Ijagbo Primary Health Centre and supply of medical equipment to two hospitals in Kwara State.

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Residents commend Gov Abdulrazaq for construction of road leading to Akogun Oyedepo’s house

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The residents around Overcomers Junction at Government Day Secondary School area, along University road have showered encomiums on Kwara state Governor, Adbdulrahman Abdulrazaq for the construction of the road leading to Chief Akogun Iyiola Oyedepo’s house.

The road which has been in a terrible state of disrepair over the years, has received the attention of Governor Abdulrazaq.

The residents of the area in a statement signed by the Secretary, Prince Oyebanji Yusuf said they were surprised that such a road despite its importance would receive such targeted attention, given the stance of a prominent critic of the government, who is a well known resident of the area.

The community association stated that the road would reduce traffic and enhance the economic development of the area, commending the Kwara State Government for spread of economic development across the state.

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Governor Abdulrazaq sponsors Nigeria’s youngest Commissioner for post graduate studies abroad

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The Kwara state Governor, Adbdulrahman Abdulrazaq, has sponsored the youngest Commissioner in Nigeria’s history on post graduate studies at the University of York, United Kingdom.

Abdulrazaq at his recent interview recalled the emphasis on the importance of succession of women and youths in every sphere of leadership, harping on the need to mentor the younger generation of politicians in order to achieve inclusive governance in the country.

Joana Nnazua Kolo, who was the former Commissioner for Youth and Sports was dropped during the last cabinet reshuffling, but has since been sponsored for a Masters programme at University of York, by the state government.

“When we chose the youth corps member who was our youngest commissioner then — she’s from Edu local government and a Christian. They brought several names to me, but I said I want a woman. Then they came up and said the only woman we have will finish her youth service next month. I said bring her, we will wait till next month to swear her in. The community brought her. Maybe it was deliberate to show that she’s in youth service, but we embraced her. And she’s done well. She’s not in the cabinet any more. We’re sponsoring her for a master’s programme in the UK. She’s had the experience but we have to also prepare her for the future. She’s had this experience. What next? We will mentor her” Governor Abdulrazaq stated in his recent interview with This Day.

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