By: Our Reporter,
Since the earlier publication of the poor working relationship between senior appointees and their staff in the current administration of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) in Plateau state, REALITY has received lots of phone calls, and some senior appointees have met and rubbed minds at least, for the first time, with their staff, after three years of been in office.
Others have taken time to explain the cause(s) of the presumed poor relationship, while others have out rightly put the blame squarely at the door step of the state Governor, Rt. Hon. Simon Bako Lalong.
The earlier published situation of the workers has also, from REALITY further findings, spurred other senior appointees to do more, by taking their Ministry’s relationship to the community and to industries around in order to create more effective situation for their Ministry and staff.
At the State’s Ministry of Lands and Survey, REALITY had gathered that the staff were not happy that the Ministry’s Commissioner, Barr. F. Festus, after the sack of the earlier cabinet by the state Governor was still returned to the same Ministry he occupied. They were not comfortable with the Governor’s decision.
In a live programme on Tincity 104.3 fm Jos, Prince Valentine Adese, the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of REALITY Newspapers, put the findings to the Commissioner, Barr Festus and inquired why the face-off.
While fielding answers to the questions as monitored by REALITY, Barr Festus told the people of Plateau State that, some of the Ministry’s staff actually may not have wanted him back because he has not allowed them to perform their businesses in the Ministry as usual.
“I was not appointed by Governor Lalong to only relate, but to put things right in the Ministry for the benefit of Plateau State people now and in the future. It therefore cannot be business as usual! Those who might have been lazy and others selling lands illegally, have no place now in the Ministry. So, I am not surprised by their desire!” Barr F. Festus explained.
You would also recall that REALITY also published the poor welfare situation of the staff of the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr. Rufus Bature. After the publication, he made several calls to Prince Valentine from 10.00am to 5.00pm the second day.
At 6.20pm when Prince Valentine finally picked his call, he wanted to know why his reaction was not sort for before the publication.
REALITY gathered that Prince Valentine told him that it was an investigation aimed at reporting to the people and that he can write a rebuttal or Rejoinder if the facts are not right. More also, he has an opportunity to challenge the publication in a Court of Law, if the report is viewed as defamatory from his perspective.
Hon. Rufus agreed to send a rejoinder and an account number was sent to him to pay for the rebuttal.
At the time of this report, the SSG has not taken any of the actions or steps he promised. But, REALITY gathered that he has met with members of his staff for the first time close to three years in office.
However, the SSG had in the course of the conversation vented his frustrations and told Prince Valentine that, the blame for not caring for the welfare of his staff, should be placed at the door step of Governor Simon Bako Lalong, for not releasing the Overheads meant for his office. He questioned why the staff are requesting for more care when their salaries are paid as and when due like his.
“Prince Valentine, if the staff are complaining about extra welfare apart from their salaries, where do they want me to get it from when I am not receiving Overhead. My salary? Please ask them!
“Come to Barkin-ladi and see how many people I have to attend to daily, especially, at the weekend. You would pity me and know that my salary also is not enough!” the SSG stated in the telephone conversation with Prince Valentine.
At the Ministry of Information and Communication, the Commissioner, Mr. Yakubu Dati, spurred by the earlier publication, is now making the Ministry more effective in its operation. He has innovated a strategy of reuniting the Information Ministry with its lost sister organizations in the state.
The Commissioner from reports reaching REALITY is presently embarking on a familiarization tour of Federal Government owned media organizations in the state and bringing the message of the state and the state Governor to their door step.
Mr. Dati has continued to use the visit to also express the state Governor’s appreciations to the media houses, over their reportages that is helping the state government maintain peace and their excellent coverage of the President’s visit recently to the state.
In a telephone conversation with Prince Valentine, the Hon. Commissioner for Information, Mr. Dati, had rather than frowning over previous reports of REALITY, called for more assessment of his work by the media and the people of the state.
He said, “My appointment by His Excellency (HE), is to come and serve the people of the state and I cannot achieve this alone without vibrant staff in the Ministry. We must make things work for the state!
“I will always appreciate assessments of what we do because it would spur us to do more and better for the people.
“From what I see, Plateau state and its administration have been under reported for long hence, the Ministry of Information staff and I are trying to create synergy and cooperation with other media houses to change this.”
TO BE CONTINUED!