Benue State Government has justified its cancellation of the last minute decisions of former Governor Gabriel Suswam.
This is contained in a statement signed by Tahav Agerzua, the Special Adviser on Media and Information Communication Technology, to Governor Samuel Ortom.
It stated that the clarification became necessary because the government had a responsibility to explain its actions to the people where the need arose.
We had earlier reported that a former Commissioner of Police for Lagos State, Abubakar Tsav, had condemned Gov. Ortom’s reversal of certain decisions and policies taken by the previous administration, saying it smacked of ‘over-excitement’.
“I’m not in any way satisfied by what is happening in Benue State right now. As soon as Ortom came into office, he sacked workers where just newly and genuinely employed. [Muhammadu] Buhari has not sacked anybody, he is not excited that he is president because he is there to serve”, Mr. Tsav told journalists in Makurdi, the Benue State capital yesterday.
However, Agerzua insisted that “Ortom’s cancellation of the last minute recruitment is justified on account of the current inability of the government to pay workers their salaries and other entitlements for several months.
“The same goes for pensioners who are being owed several months of their retirement benefits”.
According to him, the state Ministry of Finance was indebted to the tune of N12 billion in that regard.
He also added that preliminary figures from the ministry further showed another debt burden in other areas amounting to more than N70 billion with more being expected as investigations continued.
“In light of this development, it became untenable and even irresponsible to take on more financial burdens arising from the new recruitment”, the statement said.
“Most of these burdens Ortom has advised against and has warned beneficiaries not to accept. Moreover, most of the recruitment did not follow due process.
“It must be noted that the appointment of new permanent secretaries and others made in the twilight of the previous administration, including the director-general of Radio Benue have not been reversed”.
In his inaugural speech, Mr. Ortom pledged to sustain whatever was properly done and boldly correct any wrong policies or decisions of the previous administration.