NIPC staff vow to keep protesting until CEO exits

Posted by News Express | 23 April 2015 | 3,086 times

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The woes of the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Investment Promotion Council (NIPC), Mrs. Saratu Umar, mounted yesterday, with staff of the organisation demonstrating for her ouster for the second day running. They vowed to continue the struggle until she either resigns or is sacked by the Federal Government.

The irate workers had on Tuesday denied Mrs. Umar entry into her office over alleged intimidation.

During the protest, the staff gathered outside the main entrance in groups, discussing while some carried placards with inscriptions like “Saratu must go”, “8 months no imprest for zonal offices”, “we need more action not queries”.

Police, however, arrived to maintain security while the staff continued to chant solidarity songs.

The union also padlocked the gate, stopping people from getting access into their offices.

The Chairman of the staff union, Ahmad Isah Ghondi, had told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the workers were disappointed by Mrs. Umar’s style of administration.

According to him, the NIPC boss, for a long period failed to attend to staff matters that needed her attention.

“The CEO, since her assumption of duties in May 2014, has failed to treat files taken to her, until last week when she attended to more than 600 files because she heard of the planned protest. I am a Zonal Officer; when I came to the headquarters, the complaints were so many that I did not know where to start from,” he said.

Ghondi said Umar had not done well, compared with previous managements of the organisation.

He said prior to her appointment as CEO of the organisation, files were attended to within two days.

“Before now, files were being cleared daily, but not anymore and this has called for concern,” he said.

He alleged the NIPC boss issued indiscriminate queries to staff, of all cadres, including directors whom she would not grant audience to.

“She has refused and avoided every effort by the management staff to meet with her,” Ghondi said, adding:

“I made several attempts to see her but that was not possible. In fact I met a director who waited for two hours with her Secretary in an effort to see her but could not.

“As an investment outfit, there is the need to operate an open door policy and we do not have that here.”

He alleged that the organisation did not operate the federal character principle, as posting and employment did not reflect the law.

“There has not been any management, no senior staff meetings; in fact the board chairman resigned his appointment,” he said.

Some senior management staff, who pleaded anonymity, made similar comments.

They urged the authorities to take appropriate actions by correcting the abnormality in the organisation to prevent its collapse.

Efforts to reach the NIPC boss by a NAN correspondent to respond to the allegations were fruitless as she did not pick her phone calls.

She also failed to respond to an sms sent to her phone to clarify or deny the allegations. (NAN)

•Photo shows NIPC Executive Secretary Saratu Umar.

Source: News Express

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