Organised labour under the aegis of the Trade Union Congress, TUC, has advised the Federal Government to recover the over N400billion bailout funds for distressed states to pay workers’ salaries from their monthly allocations.
The senior workers however commended the Federal Government for the palliatives to salvage the state governments and bring relief to the affected workers.
In a statement jointly issued yesterday by TUC President, Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama and the Secretary-General, Comrade Musa Lawal, the Congress expressed strong reservations at the move by the government to liquidate the Excess Crude Account, which it later denied on Tuesday.
The Congress however acknowledged the contrary reports credited to the Presidency on the liquidation of the Excess Crude Account, it expressed the hope that the government would prove that its present position stands.
The labour leaders, while admitting that the release of the money into the economy may have its effect on the economy of Nigeria, said “we would have kicked against the bailout but for its mindfulness of the pains of millions of workers and their families who would benefit from it.
“The move was tantamount to eroding and eating up the future of unborn generations. But we shall allow it because of the innocent workers and their dependants and on the condition that sufficient arrangements are made to guarantee early repayment of the money by the states.
“How can a governor who is also head of a family owe workers up to ten months salary in a country where there is no price control? Such laxity is totally unacceptable, a typical example of man’s inhumanity to man,” they lamented.
The statement however warned the Buhari administration to guard itself against the presence of fifth columnists, so as not to give Nigerians any reason to regret voting it into power.
“It appears some people in the administration are only there for themselves, their families and cronies instead of working for the improvement of the lot of the people, stopping the increasing spate of bomb explosions that have claimed hundreds of lives and destroyed much property in the once peaceful North-Eastern part of the country, etc. Financial waywardness, profligacy, impunity and the awkward belief in business as usual must come to an end,” the statement advised.
The Congress further advocated that the President Buhari-led government, through the office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, should work out modalities through which the money will be paid back, also advising that this be actualised through monthly at-source deductions from Federation Account funds of the affected states.
The TUC contended that certain cogent questions are yet unanswered irrespective of whether or not the bailout funds are from the Excess Crude Account. They particularly queried the wisdom of the Federal Government’s allocation of money to the state governments twice for the same purpose.
The Congress called on the Federal Government to publish the comprehensive list of the bailout money allocated to each state for public information and ease of monitoring.

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