SMART WAY OF VOTE BUYING: Ogun Settles Severance Allowance of Past Political Office Holders With N2.5b
THE Senator Ibikunle Amosun administration in Ogun State, has settled severance allowance of former political office holders, who served the state at both Local Government and State levels, between 2007 and 2015, with N2.5billion.
The governor disclosed this during the presentation of cheques to another batch of 793 beneficiaries, at the Arcade ground, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta yesterday.
According to him, his administration began the payment of severance allowance to former political office holders, on Tuesday, June 24, 2014, while the second batch of payment was held on Wednesday, December, 28, 2016.
“Those two exercises concluded the payment for all political office holders, who served at the state level, since 2007. This final batch, representing 793 beneficiaries, is for political office holders, who served at the Local Government level from 2007 till 2015”, Amosun added.
He emphasised that while his government has been consistent with the payment of allowances to political office holders, it has also been committed to the payment of gratuities and pensions to retired civil servants.
According to him, “since the inception of our administration, we have kept faith with the payment of gratuities and pensions to retired public servants. It is important that as we kept on paying retirement benefits to Civil Servants, we must also do the same for their political counterparts.”
He restated that his administration would pay all outstanding payments before the expiration of his tenure, noting that more legacy projects will be commissioned, even till the last day in office.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Chief Jide Ojuko, described the gesture of the governor as another demonstration of his love and commitment towards the welfare of former political office holders, in spite of constraints of paucity of funds, against several competing demands for the resources of the state.
“I cannot but appreciate sincerely our people-oriented governor, who has not only been magnanimous to politial office holders while in office but also after they have served meritoriously”, Ojuko stated.
The commissioner congratulated the beneficiaries and thank them for their co-operation and patience, while calling on successive governments to give due priority to payment of severance allowance to deserving former public office holders, as guaranteed by the law.
In their goodwill messages, a former Chairman of Ado-Odo Ota Local Government, Chief Abayomi Tella, his Remo North counterpart, Hon. John Obafemi and a former Secretary in Odeda Local Government, Mrs. Kehinde Adefuye, appreciated the magnanimity of the state government.
They all said the payment was not expected, especially at this critical period of the economy, noting that Ogun State is one of the few states that have fulfilled the promise of paying severance allowance in Nigeria