Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi has reversed the appointment of 16 Permanent Secretaries made by former Gov. Martin Elechi, barely a week to the end of his administration.
Umahi made the reversal on Thursday in Abakaliki during a meeting with the leadership of the organised labour in the state and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
The governor said that he took the decision because his administration inherited an empty treasury from its predecessor.
Umahi said that the appointment of additional permanent secretaries would therefore create more problems for the state government.
“The state government is finding it difficult to pay workers’ salaries as it grapples with the challenge of meeting other financial needs.
“The appointment was also riddled with controversies and has witnessed several agitations against it by organised labour and other relevant stakeholders,” he said.
The governor has set up a committee headed by the State Dep. Governor, Mr Kelechi Igwe, to look into the accounts of the state government and make adequate representation to the government.
“I call on workers to be ready to make some sacrifices and offer necessary cooperation to ensure that the state attains its developmental goals,” he said.
The governor also ordered the immediate sacking of the General Manager of the State Environmental Protection Agency (EBSEPA), Dr Chukwuemeka Okeh.
The sacking followed a complaint by one of the labour leaders on the filthy nature of the state, especially Abakaliki.
“The contract of environmental contractors which was earlier terminated has been reversed immediately, to ensure that the heaps of refuse littering the capital city are evacuated,” he said.
Mr Ikechukwu Nwafor, the Nigeria Labour Congress Chairman (NLC) in the state, urged the state government to block all leakages noticed in public expenditure.
“I also urge the government to make funds available for the enhancement of workers’ welfare and other areas that would benefit the people,” he said.
Mr Joseph Nweke, Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) in the state, called on the government to shelve plans to sack over 1, 000 teachers in its employment.
“We are ready to make the necessary sacrifices that would ensure that the government meets its developmental objectives and attains rapid growth,” he said.
Dr Onyekachi Eni, one of the permanent secretaries whose appointments were reversed, declined to speak when contacted by the News Agency of Nigeria .
He, however, promised to make comments at the appropriate time.

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