The Chairman of the State Civil Service Commission, Chief Patience Nkem Okwuofu has clarified that the monitoring exercise of the Commission to Ministries, Departments and Agencies was part of its statutory responsibility and a veritable platform to freely interact with staff in the state Government payroll.
Chief Nkem Okwuofu made the clarification on Wednesday when she visited the State Ministry of Justice in continuation of the Commission’s monitoring visit to Ministries, Departments and Agencies of Government.
The Chairman and Members of the Commission who were received by the Functioning Permanent Secretary and Solicitor-General of the State, Mr. Ben Odigwe at the Hall of Celebration, Okpanam Road, Asaba, venue approved for the exercise for want of sufficient space at the Ministry, expressed satisfaction by the number of staff who turned out to receive the monitoring team.
While expressing the hope that the State Government will provide the Ministry an edifice that will accommodate all its staff in the nearest future, Chief Nkem Okwuofu commended some staff of the Ministry whom she described as well experienced, competent and capable. She urged them not to relent even as she promised to carry them along in other state assignments that may require their services.
On a similar monitoring exercise that took her round Ministries, Departments and Agencies last year, the CSC Chairman disclosed that the findings and recommendations made have received the approval of the State Executive Council, adding that a circular letter to that effect would soon be issued. She assured that with the Exco approval, the State Civil Service will become better, virile and ultimately the best in the Federation.
While disclosing that the Commission has established a Whistle Blowing Unit to expose officers receiving double salaries, absconders, dead officers whose names are still in the payroll system and other sharp practices in the Service, Chief Okwuofu said the Commission under her watch has put necessary measures in place to handle all promotion related matters expeditiously.
She urged staff to ensure that they complete and return their APER forms without delay and decried a situation where the Commission made a discovery of a grade level 13 and a grade level 12 Officers who have put in 15 years and 10 years of service respectively where promoted to their present ranks without their appointments being confirmed.
On the issues of discipline, refusal to accept posting, disclosure of official secret, staff disposition, annual returns, officers schedule of duties, alteration of official records such as date of birth, transfer and modalities to embark on sick leave amongst others, the Civil Service Commission Chairman urged erring officers to desist from such actions and be up and doing.
Earlier, the Functioning Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, Mr. Ben Adigwe in his welcome remarks, expressed joy on the visit and wished the team a fruitful interaction with staff of the Ministry.
He said the visit will avail staff of the Ministry an opportunity to interact the Chairman and Members of the Commission especially on areas affecting their welfare.
Mr. Sunday Monye, Director of Civil Litigations and other staff who spoke separately on behalf of staff, appealed to the Chairman of the Commission to address the issue of stagnation of officers on Grade Level 16 and the issue of promotion arrears to deserving officers.