Ike Nnachi, Abakaliki
Over 17,000 persons have applied for the available 1,454 vacancies in the Ebonyi State Civil Service.
Governor Ogbonnaya Nwifuru had directed the recruitment be carried out to fill vacancies that ensued as a result of retirement and resignations.
Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Jude Okpor, on Thursday said the State Civil Service Commission has received 17,834 applications from job seekers.
Okpor stated this while briefing the media in Abakaliki, the state capital on the outcome of the state Executive Council meeting held on Wednesday this week.
He noted that out of the 17,834 applicants who submitted applications for employment, only 5,352 met the requirement of submitting Original Certificates, with their applications while the rest submitted their statements of results.
Okpor said the council resolved to uphold the submission of Original Certificates criteria for eligibility for shortlisting with a provision that opportunities should be given to those who did not attach their certificates but are able to provide theirs before the screening date.
He explained that Governor Francis Nwifuru who is the Chairman of the executive council emphasised that the recruitment should be merit-based so as to give all applicants equal opportunity to compete for the job.
He noted that the council has urged the Civil Service Commission to fast track the recruitment process to ensure that the exercise was concluded as soon as possible.
On payment of gratuity to retired civil servants in the state, the Commissioner revealed that the Council approved the immediate commencement of payment.
He said the payment will commence from September 21, 2023, with a release of the sum of N3,851,763,617.65.
“EXCO had earlier received a preliminary report on this matter during which the sum of about N4.3 billion was earmarked for the exercise.
“However, following the actual compilation and computation by the Gratuity Committee and other relevant organs of government with actual available data, it was found out that the total of eligible beneficiaries (retirees) at present is 1,715 which amounted to the approved sum at the council deliberations.
Okpor disclosed that the council received a report on the state of Ebonyi State Pulverisation Plant at Okposi Umuoghara in Ezza North Local Government Area of the state and approved that a brand new Recycling Machine be sourced for installation at the plant to achieve the Waste-to-Wealth vision of the state.
“Council further directed the Commissioner for Environment to liaise with his counterpart of Capital City Development to draw a waste management solution to effectively address indiscriminate waste disposal in the state capital and bring it to the next EXCO meeting for consideration.
“The report of the Committee on the State’s Fertiliser and Chemical Plant at Onuebonyi was read and adopted by Council. Chairman of the Council in background information, explained the genesis of the crises at the plant which was based on the former General Manager’s refusal to leave office even when the past Governor dissolved all the appointees. An audit panel of the office of the Auditor General further indicted him for financial impropriety.
“Other issues which emanated from his unprofessional conduct necessitated the setting up of the committee on 11th September, inaugurated by the Secretary to the State Government, Prof Grace Umezuruike.
“Part of the findings of the Committee as read out is that the suspended General Manager used his private company for procuring equipment and materials for the fertiliser plant with government fund which was not properly accounted for.
The following recommendations, among others, were made; “That the matter be referred to the state Attorney General for further action. That the government should charge the embattled former GM for using the State storage facility for his private company.
“That the Board of Directors should be properly constituted for proper supervision of the company.
“That other matters of criminality and shoddy transactions by the former GM should be referred to the police for proper investigation.
“The Committee concluded that the former GM, did not comply with the code of conduct for public officers in his transactions in the company, and such conduct should be followed with the recommended process of public probe.
“The Council after deliberations deferred further action on the report to the next EXCO meeting,” he stated.