By Jonathan Ugbal; Government House Correspondent
The Cross River State Executive Council (CRSEC) has announced that the state governor will forfeit 80 percent of his statutory salaries while each member of his cabinet will also forfeit 20 percent of their salaries to free up funds to pay more appointees.
The construction of three model schools in the state was also approved by the CRSEC.
The Information Commissioner, Rosemary Archibong who announced this shortly after the second CRSEC meeting held at the executive chambers of the governor’s office in Calabar Monday, described it as a sacrifice from the 31 member council.
The Secretary to the State Government, Tina Agbor while corroborating Archibong’s statement said “We are sacrificing 20 percent of our salaries for the goodness of Cross River State.
“The governor has voluntarily sacrificed 80 percent of his salary, the deputy 20 percent and SSG 20 percent which is same for all the Exco members.”
In a similar vein, the Education Commissioner, Goddy Etta said the contribution “is in recognition of the governor’s wish to expand the government, so people will feel governance, so they will be enough for many Cross Riverians as possible.”
According to the Finance Commissioner, Asuquo Ekpenyong “This initiative is meant to free up some money, some disposable income to include more Cross River indigenes into government. This increase in disposable income is still under recurrent expenditure, for capital expenditure we will still be working with investors to invest in our major projects.”
On the approval for the building of three model schools, the Education Commissioner said the institutions will be spread across the three senatorial districts in the state and explained the reason for the action.
“Exco has given approval for the establishment of three model primary and junior secondary schools, one in each senatorial district. The aim of this initiative is to partner with the Canadian government to have their model in place to see if we can situate within Cross River State, very high standard schools that will act as a model for others to copy, to see if we can raise the educational standard of our children.
“The education is strictly for our children. At the moment the statistics are appalling so the Exco decided that this is the initiative that will turn things around.”
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