The Yemeni government has officially announced the end of a chronic cash crunch and has already begun paying salaries of thousands of public servants across Yemen, including those provinces under the control of Iran-backed Al Houthis.
Yemeni prime minister Ahmad Obeid Bin Dhaghar said on Monday that his government, which is temporarily-based in the port city of Aden, sent salaries to all public servants on Monday after receiving billions of riyals worth of money notes printed in Russia.
“There will no longer be unpaid government employees and the ministry of finance would begin sending salaries to the government institutes [across Yemen] on Monday,” Bin Daghar said on his official Twitter feed on Sunday night.
Local media outlets recently reported that a cargo plane carrying 200 billion riyals (USD1=310 Riyal] in cash printed in Russia landed in the city of Aden last week.
Yemen has been beset by severe shortage of cash since the internationally-recognised government relocated the headquarters of the central bank to Aden in September in order to stop Al Houthis from plundering the bank’s reserves.
Al Houthis, angered by the move, responded by cutting off the flow of money from the bank, preventing thousands of government employees from receiving their salaries.
Bin Daghar said that the government would pay public servants who were added to the payroll before the Al Houthi coup against president Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi in early 2015.
Shortly after seizing power, Al Houthi militants appointed thousands of their supporters in key positions including the army, security apparatus and the public posts.
Government-run bodies across Yemen have been ordered to send their payrolls for December 2014, the time when Al Houthis began exerting power.
The government also urged Al Houthis to send revenue from the money-generating government bodies including the western seaport of Hodeida to the central bank in Aden and its branch in Sana’a.
Meanwhile, professors at Sana’a University in the capital announced a strike due to unpaid salaries.
Al Houthi militants have threatened to crackdown on professors, accusing them of allying with the Saudi-led Arab coalition backing Hadi’s government.
In the south, despite the government pledges to pay all public servants, dozens of army and civilian pensioners on Monday blocked a main road in the city of Aden demanding the government pay their unpaid salaries of several months.
Public servants in other liberated provinces also took to the streets in protest.