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Kogiís N1b trapped in Trade Bank

Posted by From EMMANUEL ADEYEMI, Lokoja on 2006/01/26 | Views: 287 |

Kogiís N1b trapped in Trade Bank


About N1 billion belonging to Kogi State Government, local council areas, Federal Government parastatals and other private depositors in the state is trapped in Lokoja branch of the failed Trade Bank, and this is threatening economic activities in the state.

About N1 billion belonging to Kogi State Government, local council areas, Federal Government parastatals and other private depositors in the state is trapped in Lokoja branch of the failed Trade Bank, and this is threatening economic activities in the state.

Daily Sun findings show a growing discontent among workers who are threatening to down tools following the inability of their employers to pay their salaries. Trade Bank was jointly owned by the Kwara and Kogi State governments before it failed to recapitalise and was subsequently liquidated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

Some of the depositors mostly affected are the Kogi State government, the 21 local government areas in the state, some federal parastatals, such as Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja, para-military organizations, state paratatals and boards, such as SUBEB, Teaching Service Commission and the office of the Deputy Governor, among others.

For example, SUBEB has over N345 million of the December 2005 salary for primary schools teachers trapped in the bank. The chairman of the Board, Canon Daniel Agonoh Adejo, said few smart local government education authorities were able to cash their salaries before the December 31, CBN deadline.

Some of the teachers from various local government areas in the state trooped to the SUBEB office last Friday and protested the non-payment of their salaries, beating up the personal assistant to the Chairman and singing war songs. The workers threatened that within 72hours, which ended last Monday, their salaries and allowances must be paid or there will be industrial unrest.

Also, staffers of the Federal Medical Centre under an emergency joint union congress last Friday issued a seven-day ultimatum to management for its inability to pay their December salary.
The joint congress, which comprises National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, Medical and Health Workers and Association of Resident Doctors, accused the FMC management of insensitivity and gross negligence on issues relating to welfare of staff.

In a related development, Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) is preparing for a strike due to the trapping of funds in the local government joint account in the same branch of Trade Bank.

Staffers in various government parastatals, including office of the Deputy Governor, are said to be groaning in pain as a result of huge amount of money trapped in the bank.
Kogi State government was said not to be happy about this development and had, before December, made several efforts to forestall the problem.

Daily Sun learnt that having foreseen what could happen to the bank, government through the office of Accountant General, had made several efforts to move government account from the bank, but the management at the Lokoja branch office frustrated all their efforts until the sledge hammer came on December 31, 2005 on the bank.

However, government, it is gathered, is making spirited efforts to retrieve the trapped funds.
Governor Ibrahim Idris has also promised to make alternative arrangement to pay salaries of those who are affected in the exercise.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.