For almost 31 months since they came into office, political office holders in the 20 Local Government Areas and 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) of Ogun State have not received any allocation from the state government, according to The Guardian findings.
Investigations show that the non-disbursement of the monthly allocation preceded the election of the council officials as the state government had stopped the disbursement since July 2015.
This was confirmed to The Guardian by the Chairman of Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government, Bashiru Oladele Adeniji, during the commissioning of some projects executed by his administration, where he noted that the projects were done via Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), as “We have not received any allocation from the state since we came on board two and a half years ago.”
According to a source, “The Chairmen and Councilors came into office in October 2016, but the government had stopped the release of allocation since July 2015. In place of the allocation, the Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, promised monthly release of a grant of N2m to each of the councils, but the money came for only three to four months and it completely stopped.”
The Guardian learnt from officials of some of the councils that since government withheld the release of the allocations, it took over the responsibility of paying salaries directly to council workers. “After preparing our monthly salaries vouchers, we send them to the Governor’s office, Abeokuta and after doing the due diligence, they pay our salaries via e-banking, leaving the councils in abject poverty.
Commissioner for Finance, Wale Oshinowo told The Guardian that as the council workers are employees of government, they are not owed salaries, adding that the state even add to the allocations from its IGR.
“I think it is better you check their salary account and see any month we have not paid, including their deductions. We have paid, as at April, we do not owe anybody. As per Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC), this month alone, we have given over three to four per cent of what we received from the Federal Government from our own IGR.
“We are not owing anybody. We don’t have access to their money, when we look at it and see that it is not enough, because its one party, one government, we add to it and transfer the money to them. If they can show documentary evidence that we owe them, let them show it, I am ready for discussion.”