LP Crisis: Abure’s claims on alleged stolen staff salaries are curious — former National Treasurer Opara

Stakeholders of the Labour Party have said that the Chairman of the Party, Julius Abure, has a lot of explanations to make on his claims of money stolen at the National Secretariat of the Party by protesters.


The chieftains of the party said Abure claims that money meant for the salaries of the staff of the Labour Party was stolen during the protest and remained curious about the possibility of online financial transactions.


The immediate past National Treasurer of the Labour Party, Ms Oluchi Opara, has said that the National Chairman of the Party, Comrade Julius Abure, must have been up to other things to make such a claim, reports Nigerian Tribune.


She said salaries have not been paid with cash. The Labour Party, according to her, does not make table payments; therefore, the stolen money, if any, cannot be used for the salaries of the staff.


“We do not pay by hand but into the individual accounts of the staffers. If Abure is saying that the NLC stole money meant for the salaries of staffers, I want to put it to Abure that he is indirectly seeking to siphon all the money in the account towards his personal benefit and blame the NLC for his loss.


“I say again, we do not pay cash to staffers; we pay directly into their accounts.


“What do we make of this when we have never used table payment as a method to pay staff salaries? Payments like salaries are paid into their individual account numbers,” she said.


Oluchi said that besides, the salaries for staffers hover between N1.5 million and N1.6 million and maintained that such a claim was bogus and unfounded.


Another stakeholder and head spokesman of the Obi-Datti Presidential Campaign Council, Tanko Yunusa, stated that it is curious to make such a claim, given that Internet access for financial transactions of such volumes leaves one in doubt of such a claim.


He, however, said that for the National Party chairman to make such a claim against the Labour Union was demeaning.


“Honestly, I think that statement is condescending to depict Union members who have stood firm in support of all the problems that we have had in the party.


“I think the statement is really condescending I do not think anyone in the Labour Union would have done that except, of course, to the benefit of the doubt, that people joined the protest in the guise of the Labour Union to put out such act but I doubt if the Labour Union would be in such a demeaning situation.


“As far as we are concerned, they should have a way of paying staffers salaries, except they have cash. Yes, there may be cash in the office for other things; do not think that if any loss was made, you should ascribe it to the Labour Congress,” he said.


He added that the external auditors for a forensic audit of the finances of the party have been assigned by the leader of the party, Peter Obi.


However, he said the present challenges to the leadership of the party may cause some delay.


“We know for sure that the presidential candidate has assigned an independent auditor to audit the finances of the party.


“If the party would now give all such documents as the auditors would need to consider the present situation, it is another matter entirely,” Tanko stated.


•Photo Caption: Abure Abure and Oluchi Opara


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