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FG approves N42.68b to ex-Airways staff, ASUU

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ULTIMATELY, relief has come the way of retired ex- workers of the Nigeria Air ways Ltd  after 15 years of liquidation as President Muhammadu Buhari approved the sum of N22.68 billion to be paid ex – workers immediately.

In addition , the president directed that the sum of N20 billion be released immediately to the public universities for revitalization scheme.

Minister of Finance,  Zainab Ahmed disclosed President Buhari’s directive at a meeting with the ex- workers of defunct National Carrier and members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities ( ASUU).

Ex-workers of the airline has been in a dire and despair condition following accumulated outstanding benefits running for years after the airline was liquidated. The distraught ex- workers staged a protest at the entrance gate to the headquarters of Ministry of Finance, a day after resumption of office of the new minister, Zainab, who empathized with the protesting ex- workers with a promised to take up the issue.

She said, “ upon my resumption of office as the Minister of Finance, some pending fiscal issues in the aviation and education sectors were immediately brought to my attention. As such, I took it as a challenge to quickly address key issues regarding the settlement of existing claims in both sectors. Consequently upon this, I’m happy to inform you that Mr. President has graciously approved the sum of N22.68 billion and N20 billion to aviation and education sectors respectively “.

While promising that, the balance of fund of retired airways workers would be paid as soon as government finances improves , which she pegs at six months from now, she said the initial amount after liquation came to N78 billion.

”This amount was verified by Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit (PICA) and other relevant stakeholders in line with the condition of service of Nigeria Airways in liquidation and other extant rules and regulations. At the end of which the sum of N45 billion was agreed as the total retirements benefits of the affected staff”.

On N20 billion approval for public universities, which came in the wake of ASUU’s fresh ultimatum for strike, Zainab said revitalization fund to be released to beneficiary universities was in line with administration’s determination to revitalize public universities to ensure smooth running.

Responding, ASUU Vice- President, Emmanuel Oshodeke said the agreement entered with government was higher than what government offered.

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