A claim by Mr. Gabriel Onyendinefu, the Accountnt-General of Abia State, that the state government was not owing its workers, has been reprimanded by the Abia state chapter of the Nigerian Labour Congress, stating that such a claim is a blatant lie.
Comrade Uchenna Obigwe, Chairman of the state’s NLC, while lamenting to newsmen in Umuahia, disclosed that the accountant-general is deceiving the general public into believing that the government is not owing, stating that over nine parastatals were still being owed salaries of about three to eight months.
Onyedifu was reported to have said in a national daily (Not The Trent) that the state had settled all workers’ debts up till the month of May.
However, Obigwe mentioned each of the nine parastatals the government are in debt with.
The parastatals include; Abia State University Teaching Hospital, Aba (eight months arrears), Hospital Management Board (seven months arrears), Nigeria Union of Pensioners (four months) and Abia State Universal Basic Education Board (six months).
He further mentioned that all local government workers were being owed for three months, school teachers for six month, the Broadcasting Corporation of Abia State for three months, Abia State Polytechnic, Aba for four months and College of Education (Technical) situated in Arochukwu for seven months.
Obigwe expressed his dismay at the level of impunity displayed by the accountant-general, whom he said had the guts to dis out “such lies to the public”, when the workers were living in penury over non payment.
He warned him to retract his statement and to let the public in on what is really going on.
Onyendinefu was given an ultimatum of a week by the NLC to retract his claims and tell everyone the true position of the government’s indebtedness to workers.