Federal employees across Nigeria have expressed their frustration over the delayed payment of their January salaries, criticizing the government’s handling of the situation amidst the country’s ongoing economic challenges.
The outcry comes as workers from various federal establishments, including educational institutions, media houses, and government agencies, face increasing financial strain.
A memo from the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation, obtained by PREMIUM TIMES, had previously informed employees about the expected delay.
The document explained that the delay was due to efforts to finalize the 2024 Appropriation on the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS) platform, which resulted in the Personnel Warrant for January 2024 not being released on time.
This has affected Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) nationwide, with staff urged to remain patient while the issues are resolved.
The impact of the delay has been profound in states like Ekiti, where staff from institutions like the Federal University, Oye Ekiti (FUOYE), and Federal Polytechnic, Ado Ekiti, among others, have voiced their concerns.
Wole Balogun, an official at FUOYE, lamented the added hardship faced by people and criticized the bureaucratic bottlenecks causing the payment delays.
Similarly, Folashade Daramola from the Federal Polytechnic, Ado Ekiti, highlighted the difficulties in fulfilling loan obligations and meeting daily transportation and feeding needs.
In addition to the salary delays, Owoeye Ilesanmi from the National Orientation Agency (NOA) pointed out the government’s failure to fully disburse the wage award promised to federal workers as compensation for the subsidy removal on petrol, which has led to a significant increase in living costs.
The situation has also led to distress among workers in Katsina State, where employees like an engineer from the Federal University, Dutsin Ma, and a non-academic staff member of the Federal Polytechnic, Daura, report severe disruptions to their work schedules and daily lives due to the financial crunch.
With the delay affecting employees’ ability to commute to work and exacerbating the financial pressure from rising food prices, the sentiment among federal workers is one of increasing desperation.
Many have taken to social media to voice their grievances, with one worker humorously referring to the extended wait for their salary as “January the 39th,” indicating the prolonged nature of the month without pay.
As federal workers navigate these challenging times, the delay in salary payments highlights broader issues of economic hardship and the need for timely and efficient administrative processes to support the workforce.