Oyo State governor, ‘Seyi Makinde, has declared that his administration will pay the 13th month salary to workers in the state for the fifth year running, noting that workers will receive the payment before December 31.
This was in spite of the fact that the government had earlier paid the December 2023 salary and the December wage award of N25,000 to workers and N15,000 to pensioners.
Governor Makinde made the declaration on Sunday while speaking at the Oyo State’s 2023 Christmas Carol Service and Nine Lessons Service, held at the Remembrance Arcade, Government House, Agodi, Ibadan, with the theme: ‘Unto us a child is born.’
The governor maintained that his administration would continue to prioritise welfare of workers, infrastructural development and other critical sectors in the state.
Noting that whatever success his government had achieved was due to the contributions of all members of his team and the civil servants, the governor said: “To my team, I want to say thank you for your support throughout the year and even for the civil servants. Whatever we might have achieved were jointly achieved.
“For four years running, we paid 13th month salary. And again, we will pay the 13th month salary before the end of the year.”
The governor gave thanks to God for his re-election, reiterating that his victory in the election was not due to godfatherism, but because of his absolute trust in God the Father.
He equally appreciated fathers of faith for their prayers and support towards his re-election, saying “I also want to use this opportunity to thank our fathers of faith in the state. When you came to meet me, I told you I didn’t need a second tenure, but you said to me that there is a need for us to complete the projects we started and I listened to you. And you also worked very hard to actualise the re-election. For this, I appreciate you all.
“Let me use this opportunity to also thank our military men and women, the Police and service commanders, because it has been a challenging year for this country and you have been trying your best even with the little resources available to you. Thank you for keeping us safe in the state, even at this Christmas/New Year period.
“We all know what Lagos-Ibadan Expressway used to be. While coming from Lagos this morning, I observed the situation on the road and observed you are still working to keep us safe. So, I want to say thank you,” the governor stated.
He added that based on the vision from one of the clerics that the Government House Mosque and Government House Chapel should be given attention, the government would work on them immediately after the festivities.
He, however, stated that apart from the renovation of the worship centres, the Government House would be given a makeover by his government.
Noting that the closing year presented a lot of challenges, including the removal of fuel subsidy and floating of exchange rates, among others, the governor prayed for a stable economy in 2024.
He equally led the congregants to observe a minute silence for the repose of the soul of one of the fathers of the faith in Oyo State, Prophet Michael Olowere, who passed away in the course of the year.
The governor equally noted that in line with his mantra of leaving no zone behind in terms of development, he disclosed that he would mark his birthday/Christmas at the Fashola Farms, which has now been upgraded into an Agribusiness Industrial Hub.
Earlier in his exhortation, the Prelate, Methodist Church of Nigeria, His Eminence, Dr Oliver Ali Aba (JP), acknowledged the unprecedented achievements recorded in the state under Governor Makinde.
He noted that Makinde was a progressive name adding that his re-election into office came at a time when the state needed him the most.
Sr. Aba noted that Governor Makinde sharing the same birthday with Jesus Christ was symbolic.
He also called for continuous support and cooperation for the Makinde-led administration to deliver more dividends of democracy to the people of the state.
The event featured special prayers for Governor Makinde and his family, the Oyo State House of Assembly, Civil/Public Servants, traditional rulers and the whole state.
The carol service was attended by top government functionaries, traditional and religious leaders.