By Oginyi Ruth
Governor David Umahi on Wednesday ordered immediate and comprehensive re-auditing of all the workers in the state, including the State Assembly and the Judiciary.
He said the auditing will take place one day. The governor expressed worry that while the year goes up, the amount paid to pensioners and gratuity is increasing whereas civil servants retire on daily basis, he however stopped promotion of civil servants unless there is vacancy in the state civil service.
He gave the order while addressing newly appointed members of the State Universal Basic Education Board (UBEB) who were sworn-in at Exco chambers, Government House Abakaliki.
He announced that his government pays over N350million monthly as promotions for only Local Government workers, describing it as incredible.
He therefore ordered the state Head of Service, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Local Government and his Senior Special Assistant on Local Government matters to give out re-auditing forms to all the workers across the state and that the workers should sign that they would be dismissed without any benefits if they fill false information on the forms, lamenting that workers have been cheating the state government.
Umahi said, “Posting of teachers from one Local Government to the other is halted and posting of teachers is halted for the meantime. Local Government is now autonomous financially, so we have to mid-wife a new system whereby we know how to deal with them because if you are positing one teacher from one local government to the other, it means additional money for that Local Government.”
“So what we want to do is that between now and Tuesday, there will be a very comprehensive re-auditing of all workers of Ebonyi state; House of Assembly, Judiciary, everywhere and it will be done in one day. Head of Service, Permanent Secretary of local government, SSA local government have to give out the forms. Forms are filled by the various
heads and under it, the workers will do an attestation which we will register in the court that, should the ‘information I verified here be wrong at any time, may I be sacked with no benefits’.”
“I don’t know why salaries, pensions have continued to increase since 2015, then teachers are out of the way and we cannot employ more teachers. After the exercise, we are going to give waiver to each local government to employ teachers based on the allocations coming to them and then we also see how we employ teachers to beef up because I believe strongly that there is no way salaries and pensions should be going up at the same time and I have told the civil servants and all their operators that promotion is hereby based on vacancy that is available.
“Workers have been cheating us. So, no promotion again unless there is vacancy and we have sent people to go round and they confirmed that promotion is based on vacancy. I was complaining to my fellow Governors when we had a meeting, the amount I pay for promotion in one year which is over N350 million in local governments alone. The Lagos state Governor laughed, he said he pays only N12million, Zamfara pays only N4million. I kept wondering where my own over N350million come from, but now I know. So, promotion is based on vacancy that is available. What we will do is that anybody who has taken undue promotion, as the promotion is coming we will backward it.”