Bayelsa State legislators have summoned local officials to discover why some government employees have gone unpaid. The lawmakers also expressed their concern over the employees' livelihoods, calling these unpaid salaries their lifeline.
The Bayelsa State House of Assembly summoned the Council Chairmen and other officials of the state's eight Local Government Areas (LGA) this weekend over issues of non-payment of their workers' salaries.
According to the summons, the Council Chairmen and other officials are required to appear in-person on Tuesday and provide details of the Federal Account revenue received by the LGAs and their expenditures in the last six months.
Bayelsa State workers have gone without their salaries for up to six months. Most clerical workers and staff have not been paid for three months, according to conversations with a SaharaReporters correspondent in the area.
Hon. Baraladei Igali, a representative from Southern Ijaw, said that although the summons will discover why the salaries were not paid, the local government workers themselves have still been exposed to hardship.
A female member representing Yenagoa Constituency 2, Hon. Ebiuwou Koku Obiyai, also expressed her concern over the delay in local government workers’ payment. She seconded the movement to make the summons and maintained that the workers were entitled to their salaries at the end of each month.
Hon. Obiyai, who was previously Chairperson of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), lamented the untold hardship that the local government council workers may be facing as a result of the unpaid salaries. She said that the salary is the lifeline of every worker.
Other members of the Assembly, including Chief Salo Adikumor (Sagbama 3), Monday Obolo Bubou (Ogbia), Bernard Kenebai (Sagbama 2), Dr. Anapurere Awoli and Sunny Igoli (Brass 1), expressed their concern and announced that the unpaid salaries have negatively affected Bayelsa State’s primary school system.