Cancelled employment process at Ajuru varsity to recommence soon — Fubara

Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, on Monday assured that the cancelled employment process at the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education in Rumuolumeni will recommence soon.

He said that the new Governing Council now in place at the university would oversee the process and ensure the elimination of what he called intolerable irregularities that hampered the previous recruitment exercise.
The Governor gave the assurance at the Government House gate when he received some protesters who came to register their grievances as victims of the botched process.

Fubara, who was represented by the Head of Rivers State Civil Service, Dr George Nwaeke, told the protesters that it was not correct that the Fubara-led administration had neglected them or abandoned the process.

He explained that the employment process was cancelled because what was done contravened the initial approval given to the institution.

According to the Governor, the management of the institution was directed, based on their request, to employ only 867 staff with 420 of such persons being academic staff, but he regretted that the institution employed 1,900 persons with only 123 being academic staff, which was grossly unacceptable.

He explained; “Now, during the exercise, they brought the list of the number of people that were to be payrolled. When we looked at it, we saw that they had reduced every person as if they were casual workers, which the governor said no, it cannot be so.

“Meanwhile, when we also looked at it, the non-academic staff were now three times the approved number. The academic staff that were brought to us to pay were less than a hundred persons. Prima facie, the main essence of a university is teaching. So, we cannot do without lecturers.”

Governor Fubara urged the protesters to organise themselves properly so that it would be easy to interface with them when the employment process recommenced because only qualified persons would be employed within the stipulated number.

He stated; “We have a limited number of people that we advertised to employ. But the institution went above that number and took more people. However, it is for you now to form yourselves into an organised group with a leadership, so, we can show you what we have.

“The best case scenario is that now, we have a governing council in place. I don’t know what their immediate plans are but I know that they need lecturers and non-academic staff. That is where we are going to start.

“There are many opportunities that will come to every Rivers person and all residents under this new government,” he assured.

Speaking on behalf of the protesters, Mr Valentine Kponi Barinedum, said they applied for the advertised positions, duly interviewed, engaged and eventually worked for nine months.

“As Ignatius Ajuru staff, he stated; “we are here today, we are crying to the governor. If he has said he is the governor of the people, he should make us feel his impact, call us back and pay us. And that is our sole demand.

“We also want our jobs back and our salaries paid. We are here today to plead with you to, please, consider us. We believe that you are going to do the right thing. Please, we are begging you, call us back and pay us our nine months,” he pleaded.

SOURCE: NIGERIAN TRIBUNE

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