The ruling All Progressives Congress has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for coming to the aid of states to pay outstanding workers salaries and put in place measures to help them redesign their finances
THE ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, has commended President Muhammdau Buhari for his plans towards settling workers’ unpaid salaries. The APC said this would bring to an end the long-suffering of Nigerian workers who were being owed several months by federal and state governments. The party noted that the federal government bailout would also sustain payment of salaries to state workers from now on.
Lai Mohammed, national publicity secretary of the APC, in a statement issued in Abuja on Tuesday, July 7, said that the party was particularly delighted that the president had shown he was truly the father of the nation by eschewing partisanship in approving the intervention fund for all the states, irrespective of which parties they belonged to.
”We say this because when states were financially handicapped during the tenure of the last federal government, opposition states were hung out to dry while states belonging to the then ruling PDP got generous bailouts,” it said.
By his action, the APC said President Buhari had demonstrated his deep understanding of the governance as a means of catering for the well being of the citizenry. The party said worthy of note and commendation was the fact that the special intervention fund approved by President Buhari was packaged without any external borrowing, despite the paucity of funds occasioned by the fall in the price of crude oil and the unprecedented profligacy of the immediate past administration.
”The PDP that spent the past 16 years plundering and pillaging Nigeria has boasted that the Nigerian people will soon come, cap in hand, to beg them to return to power. What delusion! What arrogance! Who presided over the looting and the mismanagement of public funds that made it impossible for the nation to absorb the shock of the falling oil prices? Who depleted the Excess Crude Account, ECA, without authorisation? Who has degraded the standard of living of Nigerians?” the party queried.
The APC said the multi-pronged package approved by President Buhari included the sharing by the federal and state governments of $1.7 billion out of the $2 billion remaining in the ECA; the sharing of about $2.1billion sourced from the LNG’s payment to the federation account; and a CBN-packaged special intervention fund that will offer financing to the states, ranging between N250 billion to N300 billion, as a soft loan available to states to access for the purposes of paying backlog of salaries.
The president also approved a debt relief programme that would help states restructure their commercial loans currently put at more than N680 billion. The implication, according to the party, is that the life span of such loans would be extended, thereby reducing the states’ debt-servicing expenditures. This, it is envisaged would leave the states with enough resources to meet their monthly salary obligations and do other things.
”History is repeating itself before our very eyes. Some 31 years ago, Buhari, then as a military head of state, also inherited a huge national rot similar to what has been bequeathed to it by the NPN government and had to approve 480 million Naira for the payment of arrears of workers’ salaries. Truly, the president is a man of destiny,” the party said.
It said that with thousands of workers made destitute by the frittering away of the commonwealth under a rapacious and wasteful PDP government now being given a new lease of life, their purchasing power being boosted and the nation’s economy being reflated, the change which the president and his party promised the nation has just begun.
”We thank Nigerians for voting the APC into power at the centre and for believing in us even when the horizon became hazy, not out of our making but because of the misdeeds of the past. By their relentless support for President Buhari and the APC, Nigerians have indeed demonstrated that what is worth fighting for is worth defending,” the APC said.
— Jul 7, 2015 @ 14:30 GMT