President Muhammadu Buhari said on Thursday in Abuja that it was a matter of great concern to him that nearly two-thirds of the states of the federation are still having difficulties with salary payments despite the bail-out funds provided to them by the Federal Government.
Speaking at a meeting with members of the Nigeria Governor Forum at the Presidential Villa, President Buhari said that he was very disturbed by the hardship which state government workers across the country and their families were facing due to the non-payment of salaries.
To ameliorate the hardship being faced by affected workers, the President said that the Federal Government will strive to make more funds available to the states by expediting action on refunds due to them for the maintenance of federal roads and other expenses incurred on behalf of the Federal Government.
President Buhari also said that he will establish an inter-ministerial committee to study a Fiscal Restructuring Plan for the Federation which was presented to him by the governors.
The President said that the committee will review the plan to improve the finances of state governments and make recommendations on how proposals in the plan should be dealt with by the Presidency, the Federal Executive Council and the National Assembly through legislation.
President Buhari urged the governors, however, to understand that while he was ready to do all within his powers to help the states overcome their current financial challenges, the Federal Government also has funding problems of its own to contend with.