Plateau government gives reasons for sacking more than 500 workers in the state.

The government of Plateau state has on Wednesday announced the firing of more than 500 workers after they were found to have used fake documents, and reduced their age as they approached retirement.

Our correspondent monitored an interview granted in Hausa by Mr. Dan Manjang, the Plateau state Commissioner for Information, who briefed AbdusSalam Ibrahim Ahmed of the BBC. According to Dan Manjang, the actual number of sacked workers is five hundred and thirty-two.

“The total number of sacked workers is exactly five hundred and thirty-two, and as I speak to you, that is exactly what His Excellency, the Executive Governor said. In fact, this is just a tip of the iceberg because there are a lot of people who always reduce their ages when the time comes for them to retire, while others usually present fake certificates”.

The Commissioner noted that these workers were discovered with the help of modern technology and particularly the Bank Verification Number (BVN) system which reveals both fake and genuine workers.

While explaining what would be done to these five hundred and thirty-two workers discovered with fake certificates, Dan Manjang said they would definitely be punished.

“First and foremost, they have been relieved of their jobs. They will be investigated and made to answer why they lied and hence continued to defraud the government of huge sums of money in the name of salaries. The law requires that they either make refunds or they are prosecuted and sent to prison, either way, they will definitely not get away with their crime as they will never go unpunished.

“You see, if such act comes to the fore, the right thing to do is to investigate. That is why there is a committee in place under the leadership of a former secretary to the state government, Nde John Gobak which has the responsibility to investigate such persons as the ones recently discovered.

Dan Manjang observed that the work of the committee is not only restricted to the investigation of fake certificates but extends to cover even those with complaints

“All investigations will also cover those with complaints; you know there are people who deserve promotion long ago but have not been promoted. If it so happens that you deserve a promotion, you will be promoted but if on the other hand, it is discovered that you were promoted in error, then you will be brought down to the position you were supposed to be because such irregularities are bound to be in existence.

“The work of the committee is not restricted to fake certificates only. If anybody feels that he/she has been treated unfairly, he/she can write (a complaint) or seek redress in the industrial court.

The commissioner made it clear that this was not the first time that it was discovered that such problems exist but has been an age long issue that keeps recurring over and over again.

“It is not only now that this problem was discovered. For long, such abnormalities have been revealed. In fact, there was a time when it was discovered that only one man was enjoying the salaries paid to more than eight hundred ghost workers. This investigation will therefore continue nonstop. There are possibilities that such exist in the various local governments hence we are calling on all the local government chairmen to carry out investigations so as to know if they have such kinds of persons in their local governments.

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Plateau government gives reasons for sacking more than 500 workers in the state.

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