By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
The Census Watch, a non-governmental organization, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to pay attention to the on-going protest by some aggrieved staff members of the National Population Commission (NPC), describing it as suspicious and ill-motivated.
The group, which is a population monitoring body, said it had carried out its own independent investigation into the crisis at the Commission, stating that some aggrieved workers to support a particular senior staff for the position of Director General were behind the protest.
Census Watch, in a statement by its National Coordinator, Dr. Silvanus Okafor said Dr. Ghaji Bello, had earlier served meritoriously and that there was no single complaint against him.
He said: “So, there can be no justifiable reason for the continued protest by a few aggrieved staff members since the issues of staff welfare has now been addressed by the Commission. At the meeting of January 25, 2018 between the Union leaders, management and the Minister of Labour, the matters relating to Staff Welfare were resolved. The meeting agreed that greater attention be paid to the clearance of the outstanding staff allowances such as repatriation, burial, duty tour, among others.
“The Commission is dedicating 20 per cent of the first quarter and subsequent overhead costs releases to outstanding allowances, that issue was resolved and that being so, why should a few sponsored guys be allowed to continue to intimidate the rest of staffers who are ready to resume work.”.
He said the matter of re-appointment of the Director General, Dr. Ghaji Ismaila Bello was beyond the purview of the Commission, as according to him, Section 1, (31) and sub-section (2) of NPC Act 1989 allows for a reappointment for a second term if the President so wish and that is what he done.