During the just concluded governorship election in Imo State, it was not a secret that I supported the candidacy of Chief Rochas Okorocha. I supported him for many reasons that included his tract records. Since he came to office, his programs so far, are beneficial to the masses. The declaration of free education and slashing of a university fees to a minimum are indicative of his serious mindedness to improve quality of lives of the Imolites.
Many students that attended secondary schools in the 70’s and 80’s could appreciate the struggles many of our parents endured paying school fees to enable most of us complete secondary education. It is a big thing for me when Governor Rochas announced for the free education. He went further to slash university fees from N150, 000.00 to about N50, 000.00 to about N53, 000.00. Folks, this is a huge reduction of fees. The governor needs applause from all of us. Kudos, Governor Rochas!
In as much as I continue to shower our beloved governor with accolades, I also made a declaration previously that I will not hesitate to objectively and constructively criticize Governor Rochas when he tries to overstep his bounds beyond the scope of governor’s duties.
As many could recall when the governor paid an unannounced visit to the Imo State Secretariat and found some permanent secretaries not on duty, he declared that he would slash their monthly salaries by 50%. I hope that the governor is not going to carry his threat. It is not within his jurisdiction to dock their salaries without setting up an Ad-Hoc Committee to investigate why the scribes reported late to work. An arbitrary decision of this nature does not augur well to the rule of law.
The governor and his aides must develop mechanism to evaluate performance. It is encouraged for the governor to develop progressive discipline where verbal and written reprimands are utilized. Other mechanisms could be a suspension without pay, probation and termination. It is not recommended for our governor to pronounce an arbitrary decision without due process.
Under International Labor Organization guidelines, those employees that perform the duties that are assigned to them deserve to receive payments without hindrance. We want our governor to strictly follow guidelines before making pronouncements that affects the people to ensure compliance with the scope of the law. If Nigeriais practicing the presidential system of governance, efforts must be on deck to emulate the system. We don’t want our governor to be in the business of docking salaries.
Just recently, I read about the newly adopted policy by the Imo State Government through the Ministry of Chieftaincy Affairs that before the “Ezes” could confer any chieftaincy title to anyone in Imo State, the “Eze” or traditional ruler must first receive a clarification from the State Government. Initially, I thought it was a prank. To receive a clearance before a conferment of a title! Are you kidding? This is a typical example of micromanagement. Please governor, don’t do this at all.
You have a lot of mess that the last governor heaped around you to clear. Please leave the conferment assignments alone for the traditional rulers. This is additional headache that many of your detractors could use to rubbish your good and aggressive programs. Many of your advisers could be hesitant to tell you the truth for fear of being punished, but I will not. I want you to succeed as the best governor in Nigeria.
Very big congratulations to the firing of 27 Local Government Council Chairmen! Many Imolites that I spoke to concerning your decision regarding these chairmen, all applauded your assertion to fire them with ignominy as being the centerpiece of corruption in the State. Many of us here in the United States have the impression that the Nigeria Judiciary condoles Goverment officials who loot the treasury stark naked and, leave the people empty handed without fear of prosecution.Great job, Governor!
These chairmen are lucky that the people did not execute citizen’s arrest on them and demanded the accountability on Federal allocations to their respective councils. would have encouraged you to carry out an audit on how they shared the people’s money, and the construction of gigantic personal buildings, whereas before they became chairmen, many struggled to make earns meet.
It is only in Nigeria that looters of public treasury are allowed to go free with National honors and endless chieftaincy titles. Thanks to Governor Rochas Okorocha for changiing the status squo and doing something about it.
Mazi Henry Otulle Eke, writes from
Austin, Texas, United States
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