The Ondo State Government has earmarked the sum of N1 billion for the payment of backlogs of gratuities owed to retired primary school teachers and local government workers in the State.
The Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Alhaji Amidu Takuro gave this hint while discussing with reporters on plan to defray the gratuities of pensioners who have served the government in different capacities.
Takuro said on assumption of office, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu-led government inherited seven seven-month backlog of salary arrears, leave bonuses, pensions, and gratuities which it had to defray.
According to him, being a government that is sensitive to the plight of the people, it has to prioritise workers’ welfare, so salaries, pensions, and leave bonuses are prioritised.
Takuro said the last tranche of 142 per cent of salary arrears of local government workers in his words, was paid with September Salary.
He said that while grappling with the payment of the huge liabilities inherited as salary arrears, pensions and leave bonuses, the government had no choice but to pay the gratuities it could pay, in piecemeal.
He said the economic situation is harder, and the government has to do something as a matter of necessity, to ameliorate the effect of the hardship on Retirees.
He said Governor Akeredolu approved #1 billion to begin unblock payment of Gratuities of retirees of local government and primary school teachers, starting in 2011 and part of 2012.
He added that the unblock payment would begin on Thursday in Akure, the State capital.