Home Business Cross River Govt Explains Why January Salary Delayed

Cross River Govt Explains Why January Salary Delayed

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By Magnus Effiong

With some workers in the Cross River state civil service expressing frustration over the delay in their January 2024 salaries, the State government has said the delay was due to its resolve to conduct comprehensive personnel audit to weed out ghost workers thereby ascertaining authentic workforce in the State’s employ.

The State Head of Service, Dr innocent Eteng, who spoke during a chat with Journalists in Calabar, said the personnel audit exercise was yielding result with the discovery of workers with duplicate names, but assured that every genuine worker would get paid before the end of the week.

He said: “His Excellency, the governor of Cross River State, Sen Bassey Otu, is indeed passionate about the welfare of all Cross Riverians, including civil/public servants. When he came on board, he said that the Cross River payroll system should be sanitized. The intention is not to witch-hunt or punish any civil servant, even pensioners or even downsize because his policy trust is people oriented.

“He directed that there should be comprehensive personnel audit to verify the actual wage bill of Cross River State because his intention is not to owe workers any dime. The methodology adopted was that the files of workers should be perused and the nominal role of the entire civil/public service should be matched with the payrolls to see if there’s irregularities and disparities.

“As I speak with you, a good number, not less than 80 percent, of workers have received their salaries already. Those who have not received their salaries are those who have issues. A good number of those files have been sorted out and have been cleared.

“We have a payroll of 53,734 persons. Out of this number, 48,552 underwent bank verification and a total number of 40,311 have been cleared up to date and are being paid. Those who have duplicate names in the payroll are 429, those who have name repeated in various banks and payroll have been identified and sorted out.

“His Excellency is out to ensure that those who are unemployed are also brought into the system and the only way he can do that is to clean the payroll, that is why that exercise was undertaken.

“We have a total number of pensioners to be 19,701 in the state, both in local government and State workers. Out of this number 11,253 have been cleared for January payment. Those with same account number are 251 pensioners and those who underwent bank verification are 14,419, so the exercise is trying to be very thorough and transparent.

“The intention is that those who are not working should not be paid salary and they should not be in our payroll. I assure you that before the end of this week, all those cleared would have received their salaries except those who have cases to answer.”

Dr Eteng reiterated the determination of the State government to prosecute those with duplicate names as well as those who colluded with anyone in the system to defraud the government while many Cross River youths remained unemployed perpetually.

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