Adamawa State polytechnic authorities as well as government officials have maintained sealed lips over the recent sack of academic and non-academic staff of the institution by the Fintiri led administration of the state.
The state was replete with excitement last Friday when the social media became awash with the news that hundreds of staff of the institution have been sacked.
In a state-wide broadcast shortly after he assumed office as governor, Fintiri has announced the suspension of last minutes appointments and employments made after his predecessor, Muhammadu Umaru Jibrill Bindow lost election.
After his defeat at the polls, Bindow carried out a number of last-minute appointments, effected promotions and constituted boards of some government agencies which Fintiri upon assumption reversed noting that such commitments ceased to have any effect.
“All appointments made into the state Judicial Service Commission, Civil Service Commission, Planning Commission, and boards of the Adamawa State Health Insurance Scheme, chairmen and members of the Jimeta Ultra Modern Market Board are hereby suspended.
“Equally, all appointments made on or after 28 March 2019 are hereby suspended on grounds of public interest.
“Also, all last-minute recruitments done on or after 28 March 2019 through mere waiver without observing the laid down procedure such as Federal Character are hereby suspended,” Fintiri said during the broadcast.
He added that a committee would be set up to thoroughly review the hasty recruitments and decide on the need to conduct a proper exercise that will be open to all eligible citizens, including those affected by the suspension.
He similarly announced the dissolution of all the chairmen and members of boards, parastatals and commissions, and asked the outgoing chairmen and members to hand over public properties in their possession to the most senior civil servants in their establishments.
He added that the governing boards of all tertiary institutions owned by the state were dissolved with effect from May 29 and that the boards would be reorganized “in accordance with their extant laws.”
Since then, salaries of about 5,000 civil servants in the state have been stopped leading to a flurry of activities including a protest staged by the affected workers demanding the restoration of their monthly payments.
Efforts by FOMBINATIMES to get reactions from the school authorities as well as some government officials proved futile as they refused to comment on the issue.
When contacted via phone, the rector of the state polytechnic, professor Ibrahim Umar, told FOMBINATIMES reporter that he will not comment on the issue as only the committee chairman which implements the sack is competent to speak on the issue.
Similarly, the registrar of the institution, Rebecca Kinjir, told our reporter to direct his inquiries to the committee chairman as she will not comment on the issue.
In order to understand how the college was administered during the Bindow era, Fintiri has constituted a visitation panel under the Chairmanship of professor Saidu Buba Shago.
The Shago led visitation panel while presenting the outcome of their investigation to governor Fintiri on August 4, 2019, at the Government House, Yola noted that his panel has observed irregularities in staff recruitment processes adding that many staff got employment through waivers while the careers of others were stagnated due to dearth of promotion for many years.
Shago also disclosed that there was under-utilization of laboratory facilities due to dearth of capable hands, financial mismanagement, overstaffing and abuse of due process in running the affairs of the Polytechnic.
The panel recommended appointment of a Sole Administrator for the Polytechnic, demolition of structures on the southern fence of the school and proper management and utilization of Intervention funds among others.
Findings by FOMBINATIMES indicated that the state government has in the aftermath of the Shago panel’s report constituted an implementation committee under the leadership of the permanent secretary, Adamawa state civil service commission, Usman Dada with the mandate to look into the issues raised by the panel vis a vis implementing them.
But Ahmed Dada refused to comment when contacted by our reporter saying “I will simply not talk to you on the matter”.
He told our reporter to seek clarifications from the visitation panel which in the first place came up with the recommendations. But when asked what they implemented, Dada said “I will not disclose anything to you.”
Also, the Director-General, media and communications to governor Fintiri did not pick a call by our reporter. He did not also respond to enquiries on the subject.
A staff of the Polytechnic who preferred anonymity told our reporter that so far, about 116 non-academic staff have been sacked while 400 academic staff were also sacked.
He noted that the exercise did not even conform with the government directives and has fallen short of fairness.
“It was said the directive will only affect workers who were employed between 2017 to 2019 but I can tell you that some staff employed in 2016 were affected while some employed in 2019 were spared,” he said.