Thursday, January 23, 2020 11:55 am
The Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, discovered that most staff working under him had left for their homes during a surprise visit to various offices under his ministry on Wednesday.
Mr Norbert Okpara, the Media Aide to the minister, in a statement on Thursday said that the visit by the Amaechi was to ascertain the level of commitment by members of staff in the ministry.
According to him, Amaechi embarked on the unscheduled visits round the nine story building of the ministry interacting with the workers at about 3 p.m.
“Amaechi observed at the time of his visit that most offices were already deserted by workers before the official closing time of 4 p.m.
“The very few who were present were either listening to music on their phones or dormant.
“He frowned at the nonchalant attitude and act of truancy displayed by some of the workers towards their jobs for which they are being paid for by the Federal Government.’’
According to Okpara, the minister frowned at the way the offices were unclean and promised to meet with the Permanent Secretary and leaders of the Civil Service Union of the ministry over it.
”He said he would ensure that workers who do not add value to governance are redeployed immediately.’’
The Chairman, Joint Union Negotiation Council (JUNC), of the ministry, Mr Kolawolu Femi, who accompanied the minister on the tour described the minister’s visit to the offices as timely and as a welcomed development.
Okpara quoted Femi as saying that the act would no doubt encourage and boost staff morale in the discharge of their official assignments.
He said that the minister’s visit to offices would avail him the opportunity of seeing things for himself and proffer solutions where necessary and to interact with the staff present.
“On absenteeism by workers at the time of Amaechi’s visit, Femi said there was an ongoing training programme which most staff were attending and some others were observing their annual leave.
“The union leader also used the opportunity to appeal to the minister to address the issue of insufficient office spaces for staff to curb the issue of overcrowding in some of the offices,’’ Okpara said.
Some of the staff present said they were surprised to see the minister inspecting their offices as no past minister had done so in their time.
While expressing satisfaction with the tour, some of the staff said the ministers’ visit was a thing of joy that will remain memorable for having one-on-one interaction with the minister in their offices.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls barely two days after his re-appointment as minister of transportation, Amaechi had a parley with staff and management of the ministry.
At the meeting, issues of lateness, absenteeism, truancy and workers welfare in general were adequately addressed.
The minister had also in his first tenure embarked on numerous surprise visits to offices in the ministry.