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Cross River civil servants lament as Ayade reverses employments by deputy

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Ben Ayade

Cross River State Governor Ben Ayade has allegedly refused to recognise workers employed by Deputy Governor, Professor Ivara Esu in March this year, a situation that has caused unease among civil servants in the state.

It was alleged that Ayade claimed not to have authorised the employment of about 34 persons engaged by the State Civil Service Commission in the Ministry of Information on Esu’s orders, while none of the over 100 who were employed at the state’s Ministry of Education in January, had received any salaries till date.

The Guardian learnt that Esu, who acted as governor late last year ordered the employment of qualified indigenes of the state, the commission had gone ahead to engage most of them in the Ministry of Information and Secondary Education Board.

The commission in a letter signed by Director of Recruitment and Appointment for the Chairman also approved the appointments of others, who is directed to report to the Ministry of Rural Transformation, Establishments and Training for the formal offer of appointment, taking along with the originals and photocopies of their certificates and credentials.

It was also learnt that after orientation, another letter signed by one Mrs. Helen Brown Ubom for Commissioner, Ministry Rural Transformation, Establishments and Training and dated March 18, 2019 was issued to them by the ministry and directing them to report to the Commissioner, Ministry of Information and Orientation, Calabar for deployment.

One of the victims said: “We underwent training after we were given letters from the Civil Service Commission and some of us even paid about N200, 000 to some directors, especially in the Ministry of Education, but up till now, we have not received any salary six months after.

“We are aware that the deputy governor gave the order late last year when he was acting as governor that we should be employed. We learnt that Governor Ayade on resumption, said he did not authorise the employment, but nobody has said anything to us and we have not been receiving anything.”

However, a source at the Ministry of Education confirmed that some of the recruited workers were posted to the ministry and have not been any salaries for about six months now.

“Yes, there are people who have been with us, but because the governor did not give any go ahead since the deputy governor was the one who gave the directive, Governor Ayade seems not to be interested in the matter.

“But I don’t know about payment of money to get employment, even though I heard about it,” the source noted.

When contacted, a Director in commission, who pleaded anonymity confirmed that many people were employed on the orders of the Deputy Governor who acted as Governor at the time, adding: “Our job only ended by doing what we did. Any other thing is not our responsibility.”

State Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ben Ukpebi, said organised labour was aware of the case and that necessary steps were being taken to resolve the issue.


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