Timothy Olanrewaju, Maiduguri
Borno State Governor Babagana Zulum has vowed that his administration will kick out workers illegally recruited into the state’s Civil Service, regardless of how long they have been employed.
Zulum, whIle receiving members of the Borno State Chapter of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) in Maiduguri on Wednesday, said that he was not “looking for people to call me a nice man.”
“We must be firm in doing the right thing and taking decisions as leaders. What matter is not to be nice. I am not looking for people to call me a nice man, but I want to work for Borno, to make the system work. All those recruited illegally into the service must go,” the governor insisted.
He disclosed that the biometric capturing unit discovered fictitious names, including a worker collecting pay in 21 places. He maintained that such acts must stop, promising to flush out such workers from the system.
Zulum also promised to sanitize the local government service. He said he will not stop the payment of salaries and entitlements of workers. He pointed out there was nothing unusual about the approval for payment of 2018 leave grants for over 9, 000 workers and gratuity to personers and families of deceased workers.
“It is your right… It is also our obligation to pay and we will continue to do that,” he said. He said the government will not go outside the recommendation of the biometric verification unit, adding that he has given the labour union a month to inform workers experiencing challenges with their pay to appeal to the committee in charge. He said government will not take any complaint after one month.
The governor stated that the state plans to build houses for workers, adding that the provision will be made in the 2020 budget. While urging the civil servants to be productive, he warned that his government would not entertain laziness and redundancy.
NLC Chairman Bulama Abiso said that the union met with the governor to appreciate him for approving the payment of leave grants and gratuities last Tuesday. He said the announcement came as a surprise as the union had been planning to meet the governor on the matter.
Abiso said the unscheduled visits of the governor had boosted the morale of workers.
Governor Zulum had paid an unexpected visit to the stata secretariat in Maiduguri three days after his inauguration, wherein he decried poor attendance and puntuality of workers. He also visited public hospitals in the capital and subsequently suspended some medical personnel for absence from duty.