BAYELSA State
government says it
will continue with its
comprehensive public
sector reforms this
year, as it moves to
reposition the service for
greater productivity and
efficiency.
This was the key
resolution reached at the
Executive council’s 87th
meeting in Yenagoa which
was recently presided
over by Governor Seriake
Dickson.
Addressing newsmen
after the meeting, the
Secretary to the State
Government, Kemela
Okara said the reform
policies are very critical
for the state, as the
government cannot
continue to patronize
those who do not offer
any form of service but
feeds fat on government
revenue.
He stressed that the
administration of Gov.
Dickson is focused and
very determined to see the
reform process through
despite pockets of protest
against it by those who
benefit from the current
anomaly.
On his part the Acting
Head of the Civil Service,
Rev. Thomas Zidafamo
said there is no sacred
cow in the reforms, noting
that the implementation
is very holistic and has
enabled the government
to save some money for
the state.
Also speaking, the
State Commissioner for
Health, Prof. Ebitimitula
Etebu frowned at the
attitude of some health
workers who hardly
report to their duty post
in rural areas even after
the provision of all the
necessary infrastructure and facilities.
Speaking further on the
reforms, the Commissioner
for Education, Hon.
Jonathan Obuebite, said
with the over N70 billion
naira investment in the
sector, the government
is desirous of positive
results.
He said such huge
investment cannot be
wasted, stating that
henceforth every academic
and non-academic staff
must reside where they
work as the government has
provided accommodation
for them to ease their
housing challenge.
Obuebite added “we
have spent so much to
transform the education
sector and this is because
of its importance and the
love our governor has for
education. As I speak to
you, council has agreed
to provide N630 million
as subvention for all our
tertiary institutions and
only the NDU has more
than half of it”.
While adding her voice to
the issue, the Commissioner
for local government
administration, Agatha
Goma pointed out that the
outrageous wage bill of
the eight councils which
was very outrageous is
beginning to reduce.
According to her, the
councils were hitherto
struggling to survive
because of the terrible
situation they found
themselves which
accounts for the series of
verification and once again
dismissed accusations of
the state interference with
local council funds.
Announcing perhaps
one of the major reforms,
the Commissioner
for Information and
Orientation, Daniel
Iworiso-Markson said
pretty soon all the state
owned media outfits will
be merged and christened
Bayelsa Media
Corporation with one
management to run it.
Iworiso-Markson also
announced that Gov.
Dickson during the
meeting created a new
ministry, the Ministry
of Labour, Employment
and Productivity
and re-assigned the
Commissioner for Youth
Development, Chief
Collins Cocodia to take
charge.
He explained that
the new ministry will
oversee labour related
issue and work on the
number of unemployed
youths in the state, as
the government will
soon lift the embargo it
placed on employment
after a certain milestone
has been achieved in the
reforms process which
certainly will “create
openings for young
people,” he said.

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