One of the unfortunate consequences of running a democracy like the one in Nigeria is that each elected official at every level can run their elected office to their discretion and no one else is allowed to regulate their actions. This is why a sitting governor can have a literal battalion of aides who have been purportedly hired to assist him in effectively executing his duties and not a single one of these 1000 aides can justify their value to the government and the tax payers who are saddled with paying for their services. This is the news governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State shared with his constituents on Monday.
Umahi who was sworn into office for a second term in 2019, was diagnosed with Covid 19 in March 2020, one of the first governors to contract the dreaded virus. Perhaps this time when he was indisposed, his battalion of technical assistants (TAs), senior technical assistants (STAs) and executive assistants (EAs) (who all are alleged to serve the governor directly) had no guidance and as such, allowed important tasks go unattended. Governor Umahi is swiftly moving on though. He announced during the swearing-in of three caretaker chairmen of Ikwo, Afikpo North and Ivo LGAs and the coordinator of Ohaozara Development Centre, at Ecumenical Centre, Abakaliki, that he would official sever ties with this current crop of Aides, August 1, 2020. This is how he describes it:
“I don’t know where else you will get a position and go on sleeping and be waiting for an alert (salary). It can’t happen under me. By 1st of August, all Technical Assistants (TA), Senior Technical Assistants (STAs) and Executive Assistants (EAs) are dissolved,”
Not to worry, Governor Umahi is not unreasonable and has assured the dismissed aides that they would be able to reapply for their positions in the next cycle of employment he will undergo to restock the government house with aides. The only catch, you have to have a functioning farm and a ‘business’ mind to qualify.