A mild drama had ensued at the plenary session of Adamawa state House of Assembly when the commissioner of finance, Mahmud Yunusa Sali said that the outgoing government has no records of its transaction with Zenith Bank in Yola.
Sali who alongside his Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs counterpart, Barkindo Mustapha Aliyu were summoned by the state lawmakers to explain reasons for inability of the state government to pay two months’ salary of civil servants.
Irked by what he described as lackluster attitude by the state government towards the welfare of its workers, member representing Verre constituency, Abdullahi Yapak (APC), had on Monday asked for the summoning of the commissioner of finance and that of local government affairs on why the state cannot pay two months’ salary towards the tail end of its tenure.
The house then resolved to invite the two commissioners as well as permanent secretary, ministry of local government and chieftaincy affairs to appear and make clarifications.
Appearing before the lawmakers, Sali noted that, ‘’ it seems there was a deliberate move by the powers above to frustrate the outgoing government, because the state government account is bouyant enough to ensure payment of salaries.
“The bank has kept refusing to collect instructions from the governor to pay salary. I believe they are not accepting the letter to avoid acknowledging receipt. But the money is with the bank. We have enough to pay at least April salary. And the schedule is there,” he said.
But when asked on the initial balance, the commissioner said ,’’ for now we don’t have records of our accounts, anytime we asked for our balance, they (Zenith bank officials) will always decline and give reason of network problems.’’
Debt Profile of N115 billion
When asked about the viral allegations by the state transition committee the outgoing Gov Bindow’ led government is leaving a whooping N115 billion debt, the commissioner said that the debt profile was a combined indebtedness of past and present administrations incurred by the state over the years.
‘’No, the Loan profile incurred by Gov. Bindo’s administration is N44 billion not N115 billion debt.
“These loans are accumulated over a long period of time, previous administration collected most the loans and due process was followed,so any government that comes must service the loans.
“While other administrations took loans and left office without paying, this government service the loan because the loans followed due process,’’ said he.
Also in his separate submission, Mohammed Barkindo commissioner local government affairs had similarly blamed UBA bank for failure to pay workers under its purview.
Though in swift reaction, deputy speaker, Lumsambani dilli (APC) Demsa constituency noted that the house of assembly has addressed the issue of salary payment about two months ago when it restructured N6bn loan but wondered why the issue of payment of salaries became an issue again.
According to him, with the restructuring the state government needs only N250 million to pay salaries. To that effect he urged the house to invite the managers of Zanith bank and UBA to explain why they failed to pay salaries despite the fact that the state government has the resources to pay the salaries.
After listening to the explanations by the commissioners, the House, which was presided over by the Speaker, Kabir Mijinyawa, passed a motion inviting the management of UBA and Zenith Bank, for the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs respectively, to appear before it.