Rev Fr Hyacinth Alia on Monday took an oath of office to become the second Catholic priest to govern the state just as he announced the immediate freezing of the state bank accounts.
The new governor also announced his administration’s readiness to review the anti-open grazing law enacted by the immediate past government.
Fr. Alia described the law as ‘controversial’ and added that his government would review the law to accommodate current realities.
According to him, “Effective immediately and until further notice, all government bank accounts in all Banks are hereby frozen. A ‘Post No Debit’ instruction shall remain in force until all Signatories are changed. Any Bank that violates this instruction does so at its own risk.
On anti-open grazing law, the new governor said, “We are inheriting an Anti-open grazing Law whose
implementation has become controversial.
” Having gone through some period of implementation, it is fit and proper for us to review the law to identify the lessons learned, hold the gains made if any, and reform to accommodate current realities.
Governor Alia, who recognized the plight of workers in the state, promised to prioritize payment of salary and pension allowance.
He said, “We recognize the plight of our civil servants and pensioners who are owed salaries, pensions, and gratuities. We must strike a healthy balance between caring for the generation that toiled for this State (am talking here about pension and gratuity for our pensioners,) paying our serving employees a living wage, and investing in the future of our children through revised
curricula that meet the demands of a modern economy.
“A labourer deserves his wage, so says the Holy Book. We will prioritize and address the issue by ensuring that all verified arrears of salaries, pensions, and gratuities are paid promptly without further delay
While stating that the bad politics of the immediate past government disconnected the state from the federal government, the new governor promised to reconnect the state back to the federal government in order to enjoy the necessary benefits.
He said, ” Politically, our State has been disconnected from the Federal Government because of bad politics. We commit to reconnecting Benue State to the proverbial ‘National Grid’ of Nigerian politics in order to harvest the benefits derivable therefrom,” he said.
The new governor also pledged that his administration would work hard to improve the well being of the people of the state through the development of other sectors.
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