Cautions govt against diversion
Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ademola Adeleke, has warned that the people may protest if Governor Rauf Aregbesola should spend the latest Paris club refund on ‘white elephant projects’ instead of using it to pay arrears of workers’ salary.
According to him, it is wicked of the government to starve workers and pensioners of their entitlements after rendering service to the state.
Adeleke gave the warning yesterday at a press conference at the Correspondents Chapel of Osun State council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
“You are all aware of the recent announcement of release of N16.6 billion Paris Club refund to the Osun State government. The money is meant for the payment of workers’ salary arrears and pensions and gratuities in the state.
“Similar funds running into several billions of naira have been released to the state government severally in the past starting with the bail out funds, yet, the workers and pensioners continue to suffer 34 months of untold hardship.
“Any criminal diversion of this latest release will be resisted. The government officials who are directly or remotely connected with the application of this new release must ensure workers’ salaries, pensions and arrears are paid without further delay.
“We warn that any attempt to divert the fund for bogus contractor payments or for any electoral purposes will be resisted by our people. Every kobo from the refund must go to settlement of outstanding salaries and employment of workers.”
According to the PDP candidate, “if anything contrary is done in the handling of the funds, we will ensure full recovery of the last kobo once our party is voted into office. All those involved in such criminal diversion of the Paris refund or any other funds meant for the welfare of the workers and pensioners will be pursued, arrested and prosecuted.”
He urged the workers and voters to remain vigilant.