Kogi State Governor, Alh. Yahaya Bello, has said his government will relentlessly implement the recommendations of the Staff Verification Committee to further deepen his drive towards a disciplined and efficient civil service in the state.
Director General on Media and Strategy, Evangelist Kingsley Fanwo, was the governor’s pointsman at an interactive forum organised by a civil society Group, Equity Forum in Lokoja.
Governor Bello said he expects corruption and the ‘ghost workers’ to fight back as startling revelations have exposed the rot in the system.
“Popularity secured through the protection of corrupt practices and corrupt individuals can never last. Between such popularity and saving Kogi State from ruins, the Government of Kogi State has chosen the latter,” he said.
“We had wasted billions of state resources on people who did not contribute anything to our economy but used their ill-gotten salaries to develop their places of residence across the nation.
“Those who are due for retirement falsified their dates of birth to debar our youth from gaining employment. Governor Yahaya Bello has chosen to right the wrongs and save the state from economic perdition.”
The Governor’s spokesman said government is unperturbed by “sponsored media hype against the exercise,” adding that “those who stole billions of naira through the ghost workers scam in Kogi are uncomfortable with government for not only exposing their nefarious acts, but blocking the pipes of thievery.
“Governor Yahaya Bello has written his name in gold for his courage to bed the cabal of ghost workers in Kogi State. It will be foolhardy to think corruption would not fight back, but this administration is capable of dealing with troublemakers. The Governor has challenged affected workers to come forward to prove their cases and anyone who is able to prove his or her case will be paid all outstanding salary arrears. Those who chose violence instead of proving their cases with facts, surely do not have genuine cases. However, established cases of fraud against the government and people of the state shall be prosecuted.
“Parents should warn their children against allowing themselves to become pawns in the hands of those who have held us down for so long. The Staff Verification Exercise is to the benefit of the people of Kogi State. The people of this state are united behind their Governor as we march forward together towards a New Direction.
“The Governor wishes to assure the people of Kogi State that his administration will continue to empower them through a vibrant economy supported by a motivated and educated citizenry; infrastructural development and schemes that will ameliorate poverty in the society. He is with the people of the state.” NAN