Benue Receives N15.5bn Bailout Fund

Benue map

Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom says the State Government has received the much awaited bailout package of N15.5 billion for workers in the 23 council areas of the state.

The governor, who announced this on Sunday during a church service at the NKST Central Church Zaki-Biam, however, said the N12.5 billion bailout for salaries owed state workers was still being expected.

He said the State Government on Friday took delivery of N15.5 billion released by the Federal Government through the Central Bank for the payment of the backlog of salaries owed local government workers and teachers in the State.

According to Ortom, though the bailout package had been received by the State, thorough screening of local government workers and teachers must be carried out to identify and eliminate ghost workers from the payroll before the payment will be effected.

“We have decided to carry out the screening before effecting the payment because we have discovered that local governments in our State have many ghost workers. This is because some persons fraudulently added names of non-existent people to the payroll and have been receiving salaries on such names, and we can’t continue that way. The involvement of NULGE and NUT in the screening and payment is also part of our commitment to transparency,” Ortom said.

The Governor said officials of NULGE and NUT will be involved in the screening and disbursement of the bailout funds to the workers.

He also disclosed that his administration had commenced talks with investors to establish a yam processing factory in Ukum Local Government Area to maximise the advantage of the huge yam market in the area for economic benefits of the people while offering numerous jobs to the youths.