Kwara state governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, has not collected any salary since he assumed office in 2019.
The state commissioner of finance, Mrs. Florence Olasumbo Oyeyemi, who disclosed this in an interview, said the governor took the decision as well as the repeal of pension law for ex-governors because of his interest and love for the people.
“So because of his interest and his love for the people, he has been focusing his agenda on the people. That is why we call many of our programmes and policies people centred and not government centred. The law that repealed pensions for ex-governors and their deputies was to favour the people. It wasn’t really about people clamouring for it. I feel it was His Excellency wanting what’s best for the people,” she said.
She stressed that the AbdulRazaq-led government has never defaulted in payment of full salary to its workers because it has been able to develop an economic sustainability plan for the state, enact laws that foster transparency and accountability. She also disclosed that the state has implemented the minimum wage in order to ensure good welfare for its workforce.
“We’ve implemented the minimum wage. And they started receiving payments as far back as February this year,” she said
While noting that the state has improved its internally generated revenue by blocking leakages, she added that the government would use the bond facility it got to embark on some projects that would boost its IGR in order to deliver more dividends of democracy to the people.
“Some of the things we’re doing is having agro processing industries, we’re having an Innovation Hub, we’re having a Film Factory, garment factory. So, these are projects that are targeted at employment, also targeted at generating more IGR for the state, and projects that are targeted at driving investment for the state, foreign direct investments for the state. Those are some of the things that we tend to use the facility for,” she said.
The 33-year-old fraud examiner also called for caution in the implementation of the e-naira, the digital currency from the federal government.
“I’m a Certified Fraud Examiner. So when people talk about e-payments, e-Naira, digital currencies. It’s always a beautiful idea. No one will be against it because there’s technological advancements everywhere, and it’s important to catch up with the advancement. But at the same time, we must be prepared in terms of our shock absorber, if things do not go right or if this other set of people find a way to discover a loophole to use it against the government. Even in developed countries, we know how coins have been used for money laundering because it is not traceable,” she said.
She urged the government to block all loopholes so that fraudsters would not take advantage of the platform.