By Amos Amos Aar
BENUE State Governor-elect, Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Alia, has reassured the state’s workers, including pensioners/retirees and the people of the state that his administration will clear the backlog of salaries, pensions and gratuities as well as return Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) back to their ancestral homes.
The issue of payment of salaries and pensions including arrears featured prominently in Fr. Alia’s campaign theme in the runup to the elections.
The Catholic priest, in his victory address at his residence Monday evening in Makurdi following his declaration by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as winner of Saturday, March 18 governorship election, insisted that he will fulfil his problem now that he has won the election.
Fr. Alia also gave assurances that he will address the persistent insecurity challenges and set the stage for a prosperous Benue.
He also promised to strengthen the state’s economy by promoting and improving on education and the application of technology that can unlock Benue’s wealth for the development of the state.
“We will clear the backlog of arrears of salaries, and pensions and gratuities, resettle our IDPs in their ancestral homes, address persistent insecurity challenges and set the stage for a prosperous Benue.
“We need to set the foundations for a strong economy. And on top of that, we need to start building an economy of the future based on skills and talents and education and the application of technology; knowing that the forces of global competition and technology mean that we can only compete based on skills and talents. Let us unlock our wealth”, the governor-elect said.
He called on all hands to be on deck to achieve a ‘new Benue’ which he said is possible if a new way of thinking and action are embraced and new beliefs cultivated.
He assured that he will provide equal opportunities for all in order to bring about new Benue.
He appealed to those who contested with him but lost to sheath their swords and synergise with for peace and progress to be achieved in Benue State.
While he expressed appreciation to Benue people for their unalloyed support during electioneering campaigns that led to his victory, Fr. Alia prayed God to fortify his administration with the strength and wisdom to succeed.