Kogi state Deputy Governor, Elder Simon Achuba has demanded for the immediate payment of his outstanding salaries and allowances that has been withheld since 2017.
In a letter sent to Kogi state governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello by Achuba’s lawyers, Falana and Falana Chambers, the accumulated statutory allocations the state government has withheld is N819,709,980.
Achuba’s lawyers gave Kogi state government seven days ultimatum to pay the Deputy Governor or face legal action.
The letter reads thus:
“As you are no doubt aware, our Client’s office is a creation of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (As Amended).
“Accordingly, the office is statutorily enttled to the prompt release of all allocations due to it as appropriated by the Kogi State House of Assembly and signed into law as the budget of the State by your Excellency.
“Our client has informed us that your Excellency’s Administration has consistently refused to give approval for the release of funds for the smooth running of the office of the Deputy Governor even after memos to that effect have been approved by your office. In particular, the statutory allocations approved for the office of the Deputy Governor have been withheld by the State Government since 2017.
“The accumulated statutory allocations the state government has withheld is N819,709,980.oo (Eight Hundred And Nineteen Millon, Seven Hundred And Nine Thousand, Nine Hundred And Eighty Thousand Naira) which includes travel allowances, hotel bills, pledges and outstanding monthly impress and salaries due to our client as the Deputy Governor of Kogi State. These said statutory allocations are duly captured in the Kogi State Appropriation Laws of 2017, 2018 and 2019 supported by various memos sent your office since 2017 which were duly approved without cash backing till date.
“Notwithstanding the fact that the statutory allocations have been illegally withheld our client has continued to carry out his functions as the Deputy Governor of Kogi State. In as much as our client is prepared to continue to discharge the enormous responsibilities of his office he is currently hampered by lack of funds which has wide ranging implications for the State even as it prepares for the forthcoming gubernatorial election.
“In view of the foregoing, we have our client’s instructions to request Your Excellency to use your good offices to ensure the immediate payment of the withheld statutory allocations legitimately appropriated for the office of the Deputy Governor of Kogi State since 2017.
“TAKE NOTICE that if our client’s request is not granted within seven days of the receipt of this letter we have our client’s instructions to seek redress in the National Industrial Court. It is hoped that Your Excellency will not allow our client to resort to litigation in respect of this matter as that may embarrass the Government of Kogi State.”