Niger governor gives corrupt workers 24hrs to return loot

By Ummi Ismaeel,

Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubarkar Sani Bello, has given corrupt civil servants a 34-hour ultimatum to return the state’s looted funds.
He said that the funds were looted through fictitious names, claiming of salaries of bereaved workers, inflating salaries and /or aiding such criminalities.
The governor also promised that those who return their within the specified period would be forgiven, while those who refuse would face the law.
The governor made the declaration during a parade to mark the 2019 Worker’s Day at the 1-2-3 Sports Complex, Minna, the state capital.
He said that the level of corruption among civil servants in the state was not only disheartening but caused serious setback to the state.
He said it was unspeakable for a mere driver conniving with some accountants in ministries to earn N250, 000, far above that of career civil servants and therefore wants the organized labour in Niger State, those in the financial sector in particular to purge themselves of the bad eggs.
Bello also alleged that many workers live above their earnings due to sharp practices.
His words: “Let’s be sincere with ourselves. Some of you, we were meant to understand, enjoy multiple salaries because you collect salaries of workers that had died. Some use fictitious names to collect salaries amounting to over 400, 000 monthly”.
According to the governor, “People are retiring from the civil service, people are dying, we discover some abnormalities and rectify them; yet the number of civil servants we have has remained stagnated and sometimes over-bloated and this gives us a lot of concerns”.

Bello said that he will be willing to forgive those involved in robbing the state of huge sums of money through sharp practices, adding, “I give you amnesty if you are ready to turn a new leaf and be forgiven. if we catch you after 24 hours you will face the full wrath of law”.
The governor also blamed cases of salary cuts as complained by workers on possible computer errors, saying, “Maybe it is computer error and if it is computer error it will be corrected, it is not in my character to deny anyone what rightly belongs to him or her”.
Meanwhile, Governor Bello has told workers demanding for better work conditions, better remunerations from his administration to impress him so that he would in turn listen and attend to their demands where possible.
Governor Sani Bello, who came into the arena midway into the programme told organized labour in Niger state that he could only reciprocate good gestures of workers if they show corrupt-free tendencies and sense of responsibilities said, “Make me happy and I will make you happy.”
Niger State Chairman, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Yakubu Garba, had told the governor to look into ‘questionable and unjustifiable salary cuts in the past two months’ to avoid straining good working relationship between government and organized labour in the state.

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