Buhari Approves Rescue Plan for Nigerian Workers

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President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a bailout plan to offset unpaid salaries of both federal and state workers

PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari has come to the rescue of cash-strapped states which have been finding it difficult to pay their workers’ salaries. Buhari, on Monday, July 6, approved the release of N713.7billion intervention funds for the states to pay workers’ salaries.

The bailout is part of a three-pronged relief package aimed at ending the workers’ plight. In the package are N413.7billion special intervention funds and the balance of about N250billion to N300billion would serve a soft loan to states.

Besides, N413.7b ($2.1b) is sourced from the recent LNG proceeds while the remaining N300b is a Central Bank-packaged special intervention fund. The Debt Management Office, DMO, is expected to assist states to restructure more than N660billion commercial loans.

In line with the directive, President Buhari has thus, stopped deductions from monthly allocations to states at source.

Instead, the federal government would “use its influence to guarantee the elongation of the loans for the benefit of the states.”

The beneficiaries of the relief package include workers in federal ministries, departments and agencies, MDAs, whose workers have remained unpaid for several months.

According to sources, the president took the decision to boost the purchasing power of Nigerians, especially average and low-income earners, and to re-inflate the economy.

The sources said: “In his resolve to put an end to the lingering crisis of unpaid workers’ salaries in the country especially in many states, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a comprehensive relief package designed to save the situation… President Buhari has now reviewed and approved the package in his bid to intervene and alleviate the suffering of workers some of whom have not been paid for over ten months.”

—  Jul 7, 2015 @ 14:00 GMT

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