The Nasarawa State Governor, Engr. Abdullahi Sule, says he does not like the payment of local government pensioners in percentages, especially given the little that their entitlements amount to.
He made this known while addressing officials of the joint union of labour groups, marking this year’s Labour Day, which also was his first Workers Day speech at the Presidential Lodge in Lafia, the State capital.
He said it amounted to ingratitude paying salaries and pensions in percentages, which was why he directed council officials not to pay pensioners in percentages.
Sule agreed that the councils, for the past three months, had been facing financial constraints as a result of the downfall in revenue occasioned by the outbreak of the coronavirus, but he appealed to the unions to work together with the councils to find solutions to the challenges confronting the councils.
“I don’t believe in payment of salaries in percentages. I tried as much as possible to see how we can find ways to compensate people for what they deserve.
“At the Local Government level, I told them they can’t pay 75 percent of salaries; and pensioners who are earning peanuts, you pay them 75 percent again. That’s why the D-G Pensions paid them one hundred percent,” he explained.
While noting that the local councils are owing pensioners one month outstanding pension, the Governor said this was because the Councils lack sufficient funds.
“For me, the carry home today, is that even the labour unions are kind enough to say, you know what, if it is not enough, keep it and pay us full salary next month. I mean, there is no better understanding than that,” Sule stated.
He pointed out that although his administration had continued to keep its promise, paying salaries and pensions in full, workers in the State must brace up for tough times ahead following the global economic shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.