Chairman of Emohua local government area of Rivers State, Dr. Chidi Julius Lloyd, on Wednesday, locked out hundreds of civil servants from the council secretariat for reporting to work late.
The development came exactly one week after the chairman had set up his office under a mango tree in the council secretariat to monitor the ingress and degress of civil servants in the local government council.
LEADERSHIP observed that civil servants who reported to work some minutes after 8:00am were not allowed access into the council secretariat by security personnel.
In a short message service (SMS) sent to our correspondent, Lloyd said he has already directed the Head of Local Government Administration (HLGA) and the Head of Personnel Management (HPM) to issue query to the affected workers for late coming.
He said: “I got to work at exactly 7:30 and noticed that staff were not at their duty posts, I had to ask the security to lock out late comers and the HLGA/ HPM to issue queries to all those involved. We must be responsible citizens of Emohua local government area.”
In a related development, the chairman has said huge wage bills of the local government councils should not deter chairmen from embarking on meaningful projects.
Lloyd, who disclosed this while speaking with LEADERSHIP at Emohua, headquarters of Emohua local government area, said the plan of his administration was to rebrand the council secretariat within his first 100 days in office.
He stated that the task before his administration was like that of a newly created local government area, considering the fact that most of the structures in the council secretariat are dilapidated.
Lloyd said: “For us, it is going to be a very challenging period because it is as if we are starting fresh; it is as if the local government area has just being created.
“If you were here on the first day we assumed office, you will understand what the issues are. We have a staff strength of nearly 1,500 persons who work in the local government.
“Obviously, the wage bill will be high and with the dwindling revenue that comes from the federation account, it is not even enough to pay salaries, let alone embark on any meaningful project.
“But, we don’t have any excuse; we are not here to merely pay only salaries, no, that is not why we are here. So, we need to change the narrative of the local government area.
“We shall rebrand the local government area to make it possible for people to have enough space to attend events. All the structures here are almost getting dilapidated, which for us, in the next 100 days will be a done deal.
“I have been having a lot of nostalgia trying to think where to start because every sector is yearning for attention. But, we have no choice, we will do something.”
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