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Borno begins verification of local government workers

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Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno

Governor Babagana Umara of Borno state has inaugurated the Verification and Biometric Data Capture Committees (VBDC) of local council workers and teachers, with six months to submit their reports for implementation.

According to him, the committees on local government staff is headed by Kaka Mallam Yale, while Dr. Shettima Kullima, chairs the biometric data capture for primary school teachers.

Inaugurating the 30-member committees at the Government House, Maiduguri, Umara said the Yale committee has nine-point terms of reference and would ascertain the actual number of staff on payrolls of each 27 councils.

Other terms of reference include verification of placement of each staff according to approved scheme of service and salary scale.

“You are to determine the total number of staff employed by each council since 2,000,” he said, adding that they are to establish whether or not such employment were authorised.

He told the committee members to develop a template applicable to councils for use to capture the data of each staff, adding that the committee was to also identify administrative, technical and structural challenges that impede smooth operation of local government system.

He also said the verification and biometric data capture exercise is a continued exercise to resuscitate and reinvigorate the council system, assuring that the move could make the councils responsive to the needs and aspirations of the people.

On Kullima committee’s terms of reference, Umara said: “You are to ascertain the actual number of teachers on the payrolls of Local Education Authorities (LEAs), which includes “the determination of total number of teachers employed by each LEAs since 2000.”

He said the committee’s task is to determine the salary bills of each local education authority, including the actual number of teachers on payrolls, as well as the total number of teachers that have retired, voluntarily withdrew and died since 2000.

He urged the Kullima committee to also unravel the number of qualified teachers and warned that government could lay off 85 per cent of unqualified teachers to ensure standards and efficiency in primary school system.

“Members of the two committees on these exercises are capable of addressing the multifarious challenges of development at the grassroots level,” he said, adding that over the past number of years, dynamics of socio-political factors and compelling institutional imperatives have changed councils’ trajectory.

According to him, this contributed to the gradual erosion of local government performance and decline in productivity of workers, as the system has been abused to the extent that almost all statutory allocations to local governments are spent on personnel costs.

He said far-reaching measures were initiated to reverse the unhealthy development and restore local government system.

“One of these measures was directive given to all council staff, primary school teachers and staff of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) that work in zonal offices and are currently seeking refuge in Maiduguri to immediately return to respective council postings,” he said.


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