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FG starving us of bailout funds —Bayelsa govt

Gov. Seriake Dickson
Gov. Seriake Dickson
The Bayelsa State Government on Tuesday expressed displeasure over the non-release of the bailout fund of N1.3 billion it requested from the Federal Government to enable it clear the backlog of salaries of local government workers in the state.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary Governor Henry Seriake Dickson, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, said the State Deputy Governor, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah (retd), made the submission during the inauguration of Establishment (civil Service), State Pensions and Local Government committees in Yenagoa.
Jonah, who observed that, the amount was the least among the states that applied for the fund wondered why Bayelsa was yet to benefit from the facility.
He appealed to the Federal Government to come to the aid of the state by ensuring that, the bailout is released to alleviate the plight of local government workers, as revenues accruing to the state are no longer adequate to augment their salaries.
Addressing chairmen and members of the various committees, the Deputy Governor gave an 11 point terms of reference to the local government committee, which include to determine actual staff number in the original 8 local government councils in 2007 and the related wage bill.
He also charged the local government committee to review the salary structure of the councils and rural development authorities, as well as physically identity the staff in their payroll as at December 31, 2015.
For the State Pensions Committee, retired Admiral John Jonah urged the it to verify the monthly pension liabilities of the state and local government as well as ascertain the outstanding gratuity liabilities of the state as at 31 December, 2015.
Also, it is to make recommendations for short term and long term solutions for the liquidation of pension liabilities of the state and come up with a list of pensioners to be included in the state monthly payment voucher.
The Establishment Committee is saddled with responsibility of reviewing the current salary payment system in the state and determine the optimal staff strength required to run the activities of the state civil service.
The committee also has the mandate to review the actual staff numbers and related wage bill as well as reconcile the movement of staff numbers and wage bill from 2007 till date.
Chief Francis Doukpola is the chairman of the Establishment Committee with Prof. Francis Sikoki as its vice chairman, while Deacon Markson Fefegha and Barr. Richard Ogbe are to serve as Secretary and Assistant Secretary.
The Pensions Committee has Dr. Georgina Ngeri-Nwagha as chairman, Mr. Renner Tiebiri is Secretary, while Chief Anderson Eseimokumoh is to serve as member and adviser.
The Local Government Committee, which has 8 chairmen representing the original council areas and the 32 rural development areas are, Chief Patrick Osunu for Southern Ijaw, Chief Lambert Ototo-Yenagoa, Sen. John Brambaifa- Sagbama, Mr. Bright Yougha- Kolokuma/Opokuma.
Others are, Rt. Hon. Claudius Enegesi for Ogbia, Sen. Inatimi Rufus-Spiff- Brass, Chief Thompson Okorotie- Ekeremor, Sen. Nimi Barigha Amange- Nembe.
The various committees are to submit their reports within 30 days.

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