TWO thousand workers employed by the immediate past administration in Ogun State were sacked, on Wednesday, by the administration of Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
But, the government, in a reaction by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Taiwo Adeoluwa, denied the sack, saying that the workers were directed to re-apply before they could be absorbed into the system.
Hundreds of the workers, after they had been briefed by various permanent secretaries, staged a peaceful protest on Wednesday to the Governor’s Office, the state House of Assembly complex and the secretariat of the state council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), at Oke-Ilewo, Abeokuta.
Adeoluwa, who appealed to the protesters to calm down and comply with the government’s directive, was almost lynched by the civil servants.
The SSG said: “As a government that rode to power on a popular mandate and has promised to create 10,000 new jobs, this is strange.
“No responsible government would allow illegality to stand. We have said all those recruited in April by the last administration should go and re-apply. If you are here and you have not re-applied, please, go and do that immediately.
“On our part as a government, I can assure you that no single person that is qualified and who has passed through due process will be denied employment; they will be re-engaged immediately.
“We met a lot of rot when we came in and this government is still in the process of going through them one by one. What you are protesting about today is strange to me.
“This is a humane government that respects the rule of law. We won’t be taking away jobs but we will instead be creating jobs.”
Some of the protesters carried placards with inscriptions like, “Amosun promised us better living, not disappointment”; “Where is your wind of change”; “We say no to disengagement;” “Governor Amosun, this is unfair” and “Ten thousand jobs must start from somewhere.”
They said that the news of their sack was conveyed to them by various permanent secretaries, who said that their services were no longer needed by the Amosun-led government.
One of the protesters who spoke with Nigerian Tribune said he was surprised when the message of disengagement was conveyed to them by his permanent secretary.
He said that the state government had, on June 20, directed them to re-apply, which they complied with.
“Former Governor Segun Osoba employed workers towards the end of his administration and Daniel did not sack them when he came on board. So, why would Amosun sack us simply because Daniel recruited us? It is unfair the way they have treated us. Is this the kind of government Amosun promised us?,” he lamented.