John Adams, Minna
In what looks like a last minute effort to ensure total victory in next Saturday’s presidential and National Assembly elections for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), in Niger State, the state government on Tuesday held a marathon meeting with heads of agencies and parastatals, permanent secretaries and directors at the Government House in Minna.
The meeting, our correspondent gathered was held behind closed doors; it was presided over by the Deputy Governor of the state, Alhaji Ahmed Ketso.
Also in attendance were the Secretary to the State Government, Mallam Isah Ladan; Head of Service, Mallam Yabagy Sule and other top APC stalwarts in the state.
The meeting had just one agenda: to seek the support and cooperation of top civil servants in Saturday’s elections to ensure total victory for all APC candidates.
The deputy governor told attendees that they were expected to go back to their constituencies to help woo the electorate to vote for the APC.
They were, however, disappointed when the deputy governor made them realise that the government had no money to give them in form of mobilisation as the government was merely asking for their co-operation.
A source at the meeting told our correspondent that the meeting was informed by the recent development that the party is at the verge of losing the election on Saturday.
“The government asked us to go back to our various local government areas and mobilise the people for the elections on Saturday but they are saying that they have no money.
“So what are we going to tell the people if there is no money to mobilise them. Certainly, nobody will listen to us.”
According to our source, the government was told at the meeting that in the alternative, civil servants should be paid their February salaries as a way to pacifying them.
“What we told them was that in the alternative the government should try and pay February salaries before Saturday so that people can be happy at least.”
But the deputy governor was said to have told them that it was not possible for the government to pay salaries before the 24th of the month, and therefore ruled out the option.