By Our Reporter
Following the non-payment of their salaries by the state government, some civil servants in Zamfara on Saturday observed special prayers to seek God’s intervention.
The workers reportedly gathered at the Eid mosque in Gusau, the state capital, around 10 am and sought divine intercession over their salaries.
The workers who decried the suffering they were going through because of the non-payment of their salaries, said they had been pushed to beg for alms.
According to the workers, as reported by Daily Trust, they were last paid in January and are finding it difficult to meet up with their family demands.
“Many of us have been pushing to be beggars, unable to eat one square meal a day. So, this prayer session is specially means to commit our dear governor, Head of Service, members of House of Assembly and all those concerned, for God to enable them to have compassion on us.
“We have suffered enough on account of this struggle. Many lost their lives too and we want it no more. We have gathered in unison, devoid of religious affiliations to sincerely seek God’s intervention for all,” one of them who spoke on condition of anonymity said.
In April, National Watch reported how payments were made by Governor Bello Matawalle’s administration for projects across the 14 local government areas of the state, some of which had been abandoned.
The projects include the construction and furnishing of the Governor’s Lodge in each local government area which had gulped huge amounts of money which the projects on the ground could not justify.
Findings revealed the names of contractors that received the payments from the Zamfara State government without carrying out the required jobs.
The amount earmarked and released for each local government differs, and the projects were shared among different contractors for execution. There were full payments made in some cases and over 90 per cent of payments were made to some contractors without the corresponding projects on the ground. For instance, some projects were abandoned halfway through in some local government areas.
A contractor, H3D International Concepts was paid the sum of two billion, one hundred and seventy-one million, three hundred and three thousand Naira (N2, 171, 303, 781.50) as consultancy service fee in respect of 147 dispensaries in the 14 Governor’s Lodges across the state.
This medium also learnt that the Zamfara State government had released the sum of one billion, five hundred and twenty-six million Naira (N1, 526, 000, 000) to a contractor, the owner of Bes Belmon Nigeria Limited to furnish the yet-to-be-completed Governor’s Lodges across the 14 local government areas.
For Maradun, which is the outgoing governor’s local government area, the sum of N118, 281, 150.00 was released to Zannah Kachalla World Link to complete the payment for the construction of the Governor’s Lodge. Meanwhile, the project had not reached 70 per cent completion even though the total amount of the award had been removed from the state treasury.
Documents show that for the Anka local government area, the outgoing governor approved the sum of N118, 281, 150.00 for the Governor’s Lodge in the area. The sum of N102, 313, 194.75 was released to the contractor, ERMANO Global Enterprise, with N15, 967, 955.25 outstanding.
Over 80 per cent of the payment had been released for this project. But pictures from the site of the Governor’s Lodge in the local government area showed that work was not in the final stage of execution, let alone at the furnishing stage.
C.G.G.C Engineering Limited was awarded the contract to construct a Governor’s Lodge in the Gummi local government area. The total amount for the completion of the construction was put at N118, 281, 150.00 and the sum of N114, 732, 715.50 was released to the company as an initial payment for the project with N3, 548, 434.50 outstanding. The progress of the Governor’s Lodge project in Gummi had not advanced to 80 per cent completion and had been abandoned. Yet, over 80 per cent of payment has been made.
De Ludo Store Ltd. was awarded a contract for the total sum of N118, 281, 150.00 to construct the Governor’s Lodge in the Birnin Magaji local government area. The sum of N94, 624, 920.00 had been withdrawn from state treasury and equally released to the contractor. The outstanding payment was N23, 656, 230. 00 yet the project had been abandoned halfway.