OPEN LETTER TO GOVERNOR YAHAYA BELLO OF KOGI STATE
A Kogi Democratic Forum, has called on Governor Yahaya Bello to immediately remove the Kogi Head of Service, Mrs. Deborah Ogunmola, from office.
According to the group the extension of her service after her retirement over one year ago negates all known civil service rules. In a statement signed by the Chairman of the group, Omeiza Salawu and Comr. Danjuma Mohammed, Secretary, stressed that her continued stay in office was against the circular signed by Ogunmola that the practice of indiscriminate extension of service for civil servants who has attained 35 years of service or 60 years of age would not be tolerated as that will deprive others the opportunity of ascending to the position before their retirement.
This position was clearly stated in Public Service Rules in section 020810 subsection 1 & 2 that: The compulsory retirement age for all grades in the service shall be 60 years and 35 years of pensionable service whichever is earlier.
No officer shall be allowed to remain in service after attaining the retirement age of 60 years or 35 years of pensionable service whichever is earlier.
The group who described the governor as a man of honour, integrity, fairness and justice, as rooted in his New Direction Administration mantra, called on the Governor to compel Ogunmola to step aside so as not to be a black sheep that will dent his administration that has done so much to reform civil service in kogi state.
“This development, if not stopped, will never allows some Permanent Secretaries that are her junior to attain the position of Head of service until they are retired.
“The governor in the last four years has proved himself to be a man of honour, fairness, integrity and justice. If he was given the true position of things, the issue would have been handled differently.
“It would have been difficult for Ogunmola to become Head of Service if others before her have decided to remain in office after their retirement. It is only fair for her to respect the laid down civil service rules which gave her the opportunity in the first instance.
Recalled that the HOS before her retirement had released a circular calling on government to avoid any pressure from any quarter for the extension of the service of any civil servant, who has attained the mandatory 35 years of service or 60 years of age as stipulated by law. “These are clearly stated in the public service rules.
The group also commends the Governor, Yahaya Bello for taking a bold step to reform the civil service in kogi state. “This is one silent achievement that will forever be appreciated by Kogites. It takes a great courage by His Excellency to bequeath the State a well organized and transformed civil service system. The group appeal to the Governor to direct the Head of Service to vacate the office to pave way for others to attain the zenith of their career.
The group also call on the state chapter of Nigeria Labour Congress to prevail on the Head of service to as a matter of necessity obey the constitution that guides the civil service rules and regulations.
“Civil service reform cannot be meaningful if an important aspect of the Public Service Rules is fragrantly disobeyed by the number one Civil Servant in the State.”
In a bid to stamp out corruption in the Public and Civil Service, it is on record that no officer of the same ethnic group should dominate the affairs of an organization; but reverse is the case under the leadership of governor Yahaya Bello which is a display of rascality and absolute abuse of power.
There is an adage that says “A man who stays in a glass house should not throw stone”.
We are pleased to appeal to the governor to correct the present negative impression of being an Ebira Governor as the state is a multi-ethnic state found on love, peace, equity and progress of all members of the state irrespective of political believe, ideology and ethnic affiliation.
Another burning issue that affects the morale of civil servants in Kogi State is the issue of ongoing percentage salary payment that made life unbearable as most civil servants could not meet up their family financial and banks’ obligation and we use this forum to appeal to the governor to keep to his word during the inauguration of his second term in office that “civil servants will be topmost priority”.