• Kwara, Imo worst hit
• Osinbajo commends investors, says hope not too far off
The picture is becoming clearer: 25 of the 36 states of the federation are in dire straits with their Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and this is being blamed on the slow-down in the nation’s revenue base and security concerns in others.
And the immediate fallout is that workers across the federation are languishing in penury due to unpaid salaries running into months as the first quarter of the year draws to a close.
This is coming against the backdrop of the call for a second round of bailout by state governors in the wake of low allocations from the federation account occasioned by falling oil prices
Meanwhile, as Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has assured investors of bright and robust economy ahead.
Applauding the investors for there resilience despite the hash economy, the Vice President said though there are challenges, better years are ahead.
Osinbajo who spoke at the weekend during the commissioning of the N5.6 billion Nestle Water Factory in Abaji, Abuja, said:
“There are challenges, but the future is extremely bright. Let me emphasize that the Federal Government of Nigeria is determined to build an effective synergy with the private sector in growing our economy as a viable business sector and the ease of doing business.”
Osinbajo stressed the commitment of the federal government to ease investment in the country as the government will through Public Private Partnership (PPP) encourage the private sector, provide enabling macroeconomic environment and necessary infrastructure to ease the cost of doing business as laid in the 2016 budget for expansion and growth of the business environment
According to a report of the National Bureau of Statistics(NBS) for the year 2015 and made available to journalists in Abuja, the states affected cut across all geo-political zones, the most affected being Kwara ,which had N12,460,517,954.55 billion in 2014,but only about N7,178,922,182.76billion in 2015, a whooping shortfall of N5, 281,595,766
This was immediately followed by Imo State which has experienced running battle with its state work force in the last two years. In 2014,the IGR level for Imo was N8,115,751,385.95 and in 2015 it came down to N5,472,581,634.18; Bayelsa IGR in 2014 was N10,958,263,688.00 while in 2015 it dropped to N8,713,516,526.24; Bauchi in 2014 had N8,2713,516,526.24 billion, but raked in only N7,631,798,841.37.
Cross River had N15,738,850,743.95bn in 2014,but had a drop to N13,567,122,507.38 in 2015; Delta had N42,819,209,025.24billion n IGR in 2014 but N40,805,655,911.9 in 2015;Enugu recorded N19,250,345,593.00 in 2014, but later had N18,081,014,527.00 in 2015.
Jigawa had N6,273,310,616.3 in 2014 IGR,but which dropped to N5,081,424,105.40bn in 2015; Katsina’s IGR in 2014 was N6,223,037,599.00bilion but in 2015 it dropped to N5,791,008,741.00;Lagos state also had N276,163,978,675.95bn in 2014,which dropped to N268,224,782,435.23 in the following year.
Oyo IGR in 2014 was N16,307,233,700.20bn but in 2015 it came down to N15,663,514,824.73bn; Plateau state had N8,284,425,159.92 IGR in 2014,but in 2015,it came down to N6,937,349,802.70.
Rivers state had N89,112,448,347.43bn IGR in 2014,but in 2015,it dropped to N82,101,298,408,43.
Yobe State had N3,073,780,160.87 IGR in 2014,but in 2015,it dropped to N2,251,330,427.39bn due to security challenges and others.
And lastly, Zamfara which got N3,149,630,553.9 IGR in 2014, saw it plummet to N2,741,632,541.03billion the following year.
The Guardian gathered that it has been tale of tears for workers in most states, as some are outrightly owed months of salaries, others defaulted with a particular segment of the workforce, such as teachers, local council workers or water corporation workers.
However, some of the states have reached agreement with their workers to pay certain percentage of salaries in the light of the pressing economic realities.
In the Southeast, Imo State has reached an agreement to pay 70 per cent of January salaries; those of February and March are outstanding.
But teachers and workers at the Imo State University, Owerri, rejected the arrangement and proceeded on strike some weeks ago, insisting that until they received their full salary package, they would remain at home. They argued that the institution generates enough revenue to pay them.
In Abia State, civil servants and primary school teachers were last paid in January this year while secondary school teachers were last paid in December 2015.
In Ebonyi State, the government has sustained a policy of paying salaries for civil servants before the 25th day of every month. The government does not owe them, the workers said while, in
Anambra workers have earned up to February. However, there is an on going biometric capture for all civil servants before the March salaries will be paid.
The Enugu State government has continued to pay her civil servants every 25th of the month and does not owe salaries.
In the South West, Ekiti State Chairman of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) Comrade Ade Adesanmi told The Guardian that by the end of this month, the government would be owing workers four months salary arrears: January, February, March and April.
Adesanmi also disclosed that the 2014 September salary owed Primary school teachers by the immediate past administration of Dr Kayode Fayemi is yet to be cleared.
In Ogun State, the workers went on strike for 10 days over an alleged refusal of the government to remit their deductions under their Contributory Pension Scheme.