Following the dearth and descent in world’s economy occasioned by the global pandemic, Nigeria is heretofore bedevilled with the attendant consequences of the scourge, which is apparent in the downsizing of the cost of governance by the Federal government and various states in the country.
The deficits are visible in the stagnation of human capacity development, decline in physical and infrastructural development, abandonment of capital projects and the paucity of funds to service the pressing exigencies of the masses.
It is upon this premise that Gov. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto state recently made a briefing to stakeholders in the state to harmonize a workable template towards addressing the daring ordeals facing the economy in the state.
In his address, the Governor intensified and reiterated on the significance of Internally generated revenues, IGR in the state, but lamented on the manner at which some public office holders divert the generated revenues into individual purses.
The Governor further stressed that no Government can effectively operate at it’s best without the contributory funds generated from revenues and taxes. In view of this, he vowed to disband revenue collectors in the state who do not make adequate and desired remittance to the state government.
In June 2020, the state government disclosed that it realised over N1.6 billion, being money recovered between October 2019 and May 2020 from the fishing out of ghost workers in the state. It specifically reported that about 1,370 ghost workers were unmasked in that period.
Owing to the nature and structure of the state, with emphasis on the Proliferation of the work force, it is without mincing words agreed that the economy of the state is hinged on the strength and activities of the civil servants. Bearing this in mind, the state government from time immemorial have managed it’s IGR and are prompt in the payment of salary to workers, for which the present administration have not relented in replicating the trend. This the Government have done despite the severe economic encumbrances plaguing the state and the country at large.
To manage the staggering economic situation, the state government in the last two to three months have partly sourced out funds from the grant given by State Fiscal Transparency, Accountability Sustainability, SFTAS, to continuously pay salaries.
Recall that in January 2021, the state was ranked the highest to benefit from SFTAS, where it was given $2.5 million, equivalent of N900 million to effect several capital projects for a better state.
In line with these narratives, Gov. Aminu Tambuwal is poised and composed to pay salaries, shunning rumours peddling in the state that suggests a possible retrenchment of workers in the state. However, the state government is considering a temporary downsizing workers’ salaries in the mean time, but promising to repay the accrued slash in salaries when there is a stability in the economy. This intending position have been relayed to the state chapter of the Labour Union for cross examination and necessary input.
The Governor remarkably thanked the state Commissioner for Finance, Abdulssamad Dasuki, Accountant general of the state, Umar Ahmed Balarabe and members board of internal revenue for bringing to bare the daunting issues for thorough appraisal.