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Zamfara State government has finally taken the bold step of decentralizing the payment of salaries as against the old tradition where the state Ministry of Finance was in sole control of payment of salaries and other emoluments to the rest of ministries, agencies and parastatals of the government.

To many, the decision is apt considering the continued agitation by stakeholders for reason of enhancing efficiency and ensuring prudency in the management of the state finances.

I could remember during my interview with Zamfara former Finance Commissioner, Alh Isiyaka Muhammad Zurmi, he said “if the Zamfara State government wants to block leakages from the payment of salary, it should decentralize the salary system.

“Every Permanent Secretary knows his staff and those that come to work and for the purpose of fairness and efficiency in the system ministries, agencies and paradtatals of the state government should be allowed to decide who is to be paid and when”.

Zurmi added that “the existing centralized system operated by Zamfara State government has limited the power of the ministries, permanent Secretaries in particular to enforce discipline and regulate ethical misconduct by staff, since he does not have control over their salary.

Now the council has resolved that payment of salary be transmitted back to MDAs but the question is when and how is this going to be done?


Many stakeholders said, policy shift like this need adequate preparation and engagement of active stakeholders since the overall objective is to sanitize the system and make it more effective and viable.

The fear number one, is the strength of the coordination hence there are likely going to be too many centers, precisely over 200 feeding centers who are to be preparing and paying salaries directly to the state civil servants, there may be crises of synergy between office of the Head of Service and Ministry of Finance.

The second fear is, availability and efficiency of the human resources who are to take charge of the new task. I mean Directors of Finance and Accountants who understand the basic instruments of the modern accounting system?

The third fear is lack of facilities to support the people in doing the job. Laptop or desktop computers, internet services, availability of power supply as well as other electronic gadgets required for the job to be done.

Another fear is lack of sufficient finance staff to be deployed to agencies of the government eg. Teachers Service Board, Female Education Board, Hospital Management Service Board who have staff across all 144 wards and need to be accommodated with all sense of fairness.

There is also another fear that some staff of the state Ministry of Finance who are to handle the issue of salary at the respective MDAs may likely take advantage of their supremacy in sabotaging the system by removing or adding names in to the payroll and eventually creating confusion in the system.

There is also the fear that the banks may likely not be well ready for the new trend since before now, in the old system which is to be substituted, it’s one bank handling salary matters now all banks would be involved directly, this time around.

Again if the banks are consulted, there may be better way they can suggest the new initiative should have been carried out in strong collaboration with the finance staff involved in the issue.

There is also the fear that the government did not provide enough mechanisms to manage complaints that would arise from the new system as that would help minimize the frustration in people.


So many things of course , but most important of all the steps the government should take is to try as much as possible to implement this policy shift in phases and try to set a time frame which would guide the final exit.

Zamfara State government should also try to train its finance and account officers on the current system and educate them on what is expected of them so that within the exit period set aside by the government, they should master the art of managing the crises associated with the new decentralized payment system.

Banks should be contacted and a common platform should be agreed through which all matters related to payment of salaries by these over 200 MDAs should be channelled to and mechanism for solving many arising problems related to payment of salaries should be agreed.

Office of the Head of Civil Service should be enhanced to effect discipline on erring finance officers who take advantage of their positions to withhold salaries of other people unnecessarily.

Provision for enhancing the use of internet facilities should be encouraged so that things can be done in time and salaries can be paid in a harmonized manner that no one is cheated or delayed.

Government, through the Ministry of Finance, should agree on a fixed date for the release of salary print out and the final date for the harmonization of monthly valid payroll so that all crises related to payment of salary can be managed efficiently also within the time frame.

There should be mechanism of receiving complaints and also avenue for redress so that sabatours can be detected and dealt with appropriately.

Head of Service should be responsible for the release of final payroll to the Accountant General of the state and copy the Governor on the final agreed figure based on the sub-payrolls he receives from respective permanent secretaries and heads of government agencies.

Office of the Accountant General should be the one to coordinate the payment of salaries with the Department of Salary in the Ministry of Finance and there should be restrictions of interference from any third party, including the Governor and Commissioner of Finance or any other influential person.

Though some stakeholders are of the view that the Governor may think of deploying a whole Permanent Secretary in charge of salary, if that is the option, there is nothing wrong in it but the most important thing is to get the reform right and avoid situations that would make the story worse than it was.

Zamfara actually needs to move ahead and develop a system where nominal roll is greater than the payroll not the other way round.

This is one of the many reasons why office of the Head of Civil Service of Zamfara should take the issue of training and retraining of civil servants very seriously because of these types of dry days

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Managing Editor
The Zamfara state Governorship election petition tribunal is to hold its inaugural sitting in Sokoto on Friday the 29th of June 2023.

This is contained in a letter of invitation signed by the Secretary to the tribunal Salihu Umar Esq.

Former Governor of Zamfara Bello Matawalle had through his counsel Usman O. Sule dragged Dauda Lawal, INEC and PDP to the tribunal challenging the declaration of Dauda Lawal as the elected Governor of Zamfara State.

Matawalle us challenging the non admissibility of the election result collated from Maradun by the state returning officer, non conduct of election in the four remaining Registration Areas of Birnin Magaji LG. as well as over voting in several poling units across the state.

He is praying for the tribunal to declare him winner of the 2023 gubernatorial poll having scoring over (98,000) votes in Maradun as against over (20,000) recorded as the score for his party.

Mr. Usman Sule (SAN) is to lead six other Senior Advocates of Nigeria, inclusive of Prof. Maiyaki in defending the petition filed by Governor Bello Matawalle.




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Managing Editor

Zamfara state government, through one of its spokesmans Mustapha Jafar Kaura has declared that the administration of Dauda Lawal will not enter into reconciliation with the armed bandits

Jafar who stated this via interview with the BBC Hausa insisted that Governor Dauda Lawal is saddened by the recent armed bandit tragedy that befallen the people of Janbako and Gora Namaye in Maradun local government area of the state.

He said apart from a message of condolences, the Governor had asked the security agencies to take the most decisive measures of address the deadly situation.

It could be recalled that on Saturday morning some armed bandits laid ambush on some members of a vigilante group and killed over twenty of them while they were on their way to offer reinforcement to the people of Sikkida community who were under attack by the bandits.

They also abducted over (30) women from Janbako community in the same Maradun local government council area.

Ten of the women escaped from captivity and while the police are insisting that they championed their rescue the locals said, the abductees freed themselves without the help of police or any security outfits.


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Managing Editor.

Suspected bandits in their large number had launched deadly attacks on the people of Raka and Filin Gawa community of Tangaza local government area of Sokoto State.

The attack which resulted in the killing of over thirty persons left scores of others with critical injuries.

Apart from the number of those killed, four houses and some vehicles were also set ablaze by the bandits.

A source said, the bandits had been putting pressure on the locals to pay money in terms of fine before they were allowed to go to their farms.

“People of Tangaza and neighboring villages had been paying money to these bandits and to an extent that some communities such as Azam had to fled their homes because they had no money to pay to these bandits, and they had been putting pressure on them through constant threat of attacks and invasions.

Three months back they had invaded a village under Gwadabawa and rustled over (1,000) assorted livestock.

The source added that many communities had been under the rule of the armed bandits for sometimes now because the government could not do anything to save the people in the hand of these bandits.

The Sokoto State police Spokesperson ASP Ahmad Rufai has confirmed the incident via an interview with the BBC Hausa service on Monday morning.

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