CORRUPTION: Patience Jonathan’s Choice for Delta State Gov Caught Red-Handed
By Chukwuma O. Nwaonicha
We first of all wish to thank the First Lady, Mrs. Patience Jonathan and Mrs. Rosemary Clark for supporting Anioma people for the Governorship come 2015, but with due respect, they are supporting the wrong candidate. The report below about the activities of Dr. Ngozi Olejeme over the years, shows that Mrs. Jonathan’s choice for Delta State Governor as well as that of Mrs. Clark and her group is dead on arrival.
According to the Newsdiaryonline publication: “Even as the dust over the Nigeria Immigration Service’s tragic recruitment exercise is yet to settle, reports of unease over yet another recruitment scandal has emerged. It was learnt that the Dr. Juliet Ngozi Olejeme board of Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, NSITF had engaged consultants to advertise positions much to the shock of workers and the scandalous recruitments have been carried out since 2011. Dr. Olejeme is the chairman of the board.
Insiders said as at 2010 after some restructuring, the entire workforce of NSITF was less than 100 all over the federation. Even at that management was owing these staff three promotions. This resulted from downsizing since the transfer of NSITF assets to the Trust Funds Pensions Plc.
By 2011, the workers, like other Nigerians suddenly read advertisements in the newspapers and online .The adverts were placed by consultants engaged by the board .The curious sign for the workers was that they were asked to also apply for their positions, an indication that all of them had been indirectly sacked and could only be absolved after fulfilling the conditions placed by consultants. Every applicant according to the advert was to pay N1000 (One thousand Naira –Yes the same amount unemployed Nigerians paid to NIS consultants).
Newsdiaryonline learnt that the serving workers fought this out with the management. There was a friction between the workers .The latter eventually succumbed. “Don’t forget workers were being owed three promotions, only for them to say all of them should go and apply through a consultant for their positions. It was opposed to a standstill” an insider said.
The workers’ victory Newsdiaryonline learnt was only partial. In the light of this protest, workers within were given was referred to as one upgrade, but not a promotion. Worse still, all the workers were given the same effective employment date with the new recruits brought in by the consultants.
One source said this recruitment was actually perfected by Dr. Olejeme led board without the consent of the managing director Alhaji Munir Abubakar and the three executive directors. An insider said as soon as the NSITF staff strength grew beyond the 100 workers after the recruitment “we found out that staff were posted to offices that had not been reopened (just like ghost offices like in Ekiti, in Zaria, people were posted to where there was no office.”
According to an insider, this posting of staff to non-existent offices “is a proof that the management had no input in this curious recruitment process, because if management did it, they know where NSITF had offices.”
New offices suddenly sprang up in Abuja aside from the head office. There were offices in Gwagwalada, Kagini, FCT office, off Gimbiya street etc. “There was clearly no planning for these offices. You go to corporate offices and see workers using plastic chairs. One office in Abuja has about 200 staff, yet it is not properly furnished.”
Even worse, it was learnt that most of those recruited were people above 50 years contrary to public service rule which says anyone over 50 years cannot be given fresh appointment. Such people should only get contract appointment by rule. “But people above 50 were getting employment at NSITF because management has no input” the insider said. In effect, the consultants were used to give fresh employment to unqualified men above 50 years.
Aside from the 2011 recruitment, insiders said there was a second recruitment exercise in 2013. In this case, no single interview was conducted. Nobody paid for anything. No applications. People were recruited from places of worship and associations. It was the triumph of cronyism.
There are those who believe the mission of NSITF is laudable but the institution is being misgoverned. And there is an urgent need for President Goodluck Jonathan and the National Assembly should probe into the affairs of the Fund. This probe is expected to unravel the faulty recruitment and money remitted to the Fund without due process.”
If this report is true about the activities of Dr. Olejeme over the years, politically, my take on this issue is that Mrs. Patience Jonathan’s choice for Delta State Governor as well as that of Mrs. Rosemary Clark and her group is dead on arrival. The First Lady and Mrs. Rosemary Clark, with all due respect, both of you are promoting Dr. Olejeme with unnecessary hypes. You should know that promoting a bad candidate (like Dr. Olejeme, and others like her) is like marketing a bad product, no matter the marketing strategy employed, it don’t sell because the product is not good, not appealing and not credible to the public. Based on my political knowledge and experience, I believe that Dr. Juliet Ngozi Olejeme is a bad product, it does not matter the way she is being presented. Delta State is not ready for hand over products or candidates any more. That is, Deltans are not ready for imposition of any candidate on them.
PDP cannot afford to lose Delta State to another political party by picking a wrong, non-marketable and non-productive Governorship candidate at the primary. If Dr. Juliet Ngozi Olejeme cannot manage an institution or institutions, how can she govern Delta State? Dr. Juliet Ngozi Olejeme may not even win the party nomination in her local government. Supporting her is a waste of time, efforts and dragging PDP to the mud. Based on her past work experience and records, she has nothing to offer Deltans. She has no ideas on what it takes to move Delta State forward in terms of social and economic developments. As you know ideas rules the world. Worse still she has a very bad track record based on her leadership and management records. In addition, she still has to build a lot of bridges (networks) across the State and mobilize people for her support. This may take her more than ten years to accomplish. Yet, she is saddled with a lot of excess baggage of negative characteristics; that is the bad news. Sorry to tell you the First Lady and Mrs. Rosemary Clark, there are no good news or success stories for your candidate at this point in time. I love to see a real fair contest and not an easy walk-over due to imposition of candidate. I will give her unsolicited advice, she needs a political consultancy, if she likes. I sincerely wish her well in her political efforts.
Mrs. Rosemary Clark and her group should therefore read the report above before making unrealistic comments about Dr. Ngozi Olejeme thereby misleading the public. Please, for God’s sake, let’s call a spade by its proper name and tell the masses the truth in order to reduce their suffering and continuous agitation for quality leaders and good governance. This misinformation of the public is one of the causes of the problems (socially, economically, politically, religiously, etc.) we are having in the nation today, which is now breeding uncontrolled insecurity.
Again, thank you First Lady and Mrs. Rosemary Clark for your concern for Deltans but majority of Deltans have made up their minds to settle with one of our Senator, Dr. Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa for the Governorship race 2015. The Senator is the choice of majority of Deltans – the choice of the people. Among those indicating interest in the Governorship race, only Senator (Dr.) Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa rightfully stands out among other Aspirants in Delta State. The Senator is more on ground than any other Aspirant in any party in Delta State. He is selfless, more compassionate and more reasonable in terms of leadership and management skills. The Senator is a seasoned and a grassroots politician; he is focused, experienced and has a very good track record.
The qualities and attributes that make Senator Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa a good and marketable candidate in Delta State election come 2015 are:
The Senator has a policy of empowering the Poor, Women and Youths.
He is God fearing, visionary, creative and has ideas.
He is humble and ready to work with all Deltans and does not believe in parochial leadership. Above all, he has the best political structure in Delta State. He is a man of the people, for the people and by the people and this is what Democracy is all about. These qualities, attributes and other relevant leadership skills surpass that of any other Governorship Candidate in Delta State irrespective of his/her political affiliation. The three criteria globally used to measure preference for a leader are competence, integrity and acceptability. Senator Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa got them all and today the Senator is acceptable to the generality of Deltans. I pray that PDP thinks big and wise by nominating Senator Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa as its flag bearer in Delta State for the Governorship election come 2015. PDP should not repeat what happened in Edo State, the ball is the court of PDP. The party should take advantage of it. Please note, the First Lady, Mrs. Patience Jonathan and Mrs. Rosemary Clark it is against democratic norm to impose any candidate on their people and it is also true that only those who are not popular (like Dr. Juliet Ngozi Olejeme and others) would want an easy way to ascend to power.
First Lady, please help Deltans by supporting their wishes to see the Senator as PDP flag bearer. I wish Mr. President what I wish the Senator; success in his political endeavor comes 2015. Let peace reign in Delta State and in the Nation at large.
By Elder (Dr.) Chukwuma O. Nwaonicha
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