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Abia releases N200m for Poly workers salary payment



Abia State Government on Wednesday announced that it has released the sum of two hundred million naira to the coffers of the Abia State Polytechnic, Aba for the payment of arrears of workers’ salaries.

A release by the information commissioner, Chief John Okiyi stated that the money which was paid into the account of the Polytechnic on Monday serves as further subventions to the State Polytechnic.

“So far, the institution has received a total of four hundred and seventy million (N470,000,000.00) from the state government, in the past four months.

“The amount includes one hundred and eighty million Naira (N180,000,000.00) which was paid from the third tranche of Paris Club Refund but stuck in the accounts of the Polytechnic as a result of a court garnishee obtained by a Contractor whose wife works as Registrar of the institution, and another Ninety Million Naira (N90m) paid to the school shortly before they embarked on the current industrial action.

“The monthly subvention expected to be paid to the school by the state government is Ninety Million Naira (N90,000,000). It is also important to note that early in the life of this administration the government paid off two billion Naira (N2,000,000,000.00) bad loan taken by the institution. This notwithstanding, the government has continued to pay some monthly subventions to the school.

“Our independent review of the operating cash flow of the institution indicates a critical need to restructure and ensure that the school operates within its means, through shedding the sundry excess loads that made it impossible for it to run seamlessly, like Abia State University.

“We therefore wish to encourage the management of Abiapoly to ensure an early return to work by all the staff of Abiapoly as well as take necessary measures to restructure the institution to improve operational efficiency,” part of the release read.

Chairmen of the tripartite workers’ unions (Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, Non-Academic Staff Union and Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnics)in the school could not be reached at the time of filing the report as sources within the institution told our reporter that they were in a meeting with the management team of the school.

However, a senior staff of the institution who pleaded not to be mentioned stated that the meeting was expected to discuss on how to persuade the leaders of the workers unions to call off the strike with the N200m coming from the government.

The source added that they would not come back to school until about two or three months of their salary arrears were paid.

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