I borrowed N10bn to pay salaries, grants says Gov Ortom

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Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State
Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue, on Saturday said the N10 billion borrowed by the state government was used to pay workers salaries.
Ortom gave the explanation in an interview with NAN in Makurdi. He stated this against the backdrop of allegations by the opposition that he misappropriated the N10 billion loan.
The governor said when he applied to the State Assembly for approval to borrow the money, he gave details of what it was intended for.
“I said it was going to be used to pay two months salaries. On the average, we expend N3.7 billion on the payment of monthly salaries.
“The breakdown is as follows: wage bill is about N2.8 billion while the overhead per month across board runs to about N700 million.
“So if you take that for two months you will be spending about N7.4 billion or close to N7.5 billion on salaries alone thereby leaving a balance of about N2.5 billion out of the N10billion we borrowed.
“Part of what I applied for the loan was to enable the executive and the house of assembly to take off. We needed to buy cars for 13 commissioners, 18 advisers, and assembly members including payment of allowances,” Ortom explained.
He disclosed that more than N3 billion had already been spent on the take off of the
government including the legislature.
The governor, who appealed for patience, said “no kobo from that money has been misappropriated”.
He also assured that the N2.7 billion the state received from the LNG dividend was still intact, and part of it would be used to pay July salaries.
“Benue state got N5 billion from the LNG account but what actually came to the state was N2.7 billion because N2.3 billion went to the local government councils.
“That money is still intact in our account. We are now waiting for …Read More

Source:: PM Newspaper