The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti State has said the arrest of the Commissioner of Finance, Toyin Ojo and Accountant General, Mrs. Yemisi Owolabi, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was not the cause of the delay in the payment of workers’ salaries.
The party described the claim by the Chairman of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Mr. Odunayo Adesoye, as “another conspiratorial role that some labour leaders have been playing to sabotage the interest of their members”.
In a statement yesterday, Ekiti State APC’s Publicity Secretary Taiwo Olatunbosun expressed regrets that Labour had failed to protect the interests of workers but was ready to defend Governor Ayo Fayose’s alleged failure to pay their entitlements.
Olatunbosun said: “It is common knowledge that a section of the Labour movement has compromised their office in the protection of workers’ interest. But Fayose should not hide under the arrest of the Commissioner for Finance, Toyin Ojo and the Accountant General, Yemisi Owolabi, for non-payment of salary.
“Ojo is not a signatory to any salary account; there are two other alternate signatories who include the Director of Funds Management.
“Ekiti people and workers in particular should also note that when the Accountant General was on leave for about three weeks recently, the financial transactions of the state were going on unhindered.
“Therefore, contrary to TUC’s claim, there is no reason the arrest of the two state officials should be an excuse for non-payment of salaries by the governor, which of course, he has not been paying before their arrest.
“Fayose has received several billions of naira in the form of bailout and Paris Club refund but has refused to pay workers’ salaries for five months: local government workers for eight months’ and pensioners’ 13 months’ allowance arrears. These include his refusal to pay the severance package of former political office holders after the funds for these purposes were captured in tranches of bailout and Paris Club refund.”
TheNewsGuru.com reports that the commissioners were recently arrested by operatives of the EFCC over their alleged diversion of the bailout and Paris Club refunds.