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Public Service Reforms: Bayelsa prunes workforce from 55,000 to 27,000

Gov. Henry Seriake Dickson

The Bayelsa Bayelsa State Government has announced a reduction in its public service workforce from 55,00 to 27,000 as a result of the ongoing public sector reforms in the state.

The government described the public sector reforms as one of the best policies embarked on by Governor Henry Seriake Dickson.
The Bayelsa State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, broke the news during at a town hall meeting in Sagbama, Sagbama LGA.
According to him, the workforce was reduced by 28,000 through the removal of several ghost workers discovered during the painstaking verification exercises conducted by the government.
The Commissioner stressed that the ongoing implementation of reforms in the public sector would create a lot of job opportunities aside from the generation of resources for infrastructural development in the state.
While thanking the people for electing Governor Dickson expressed the hope that more achievements would be recorded  for the common good before the end of the administration.
He urged the traditional rulers and people of the area to work hand in hand with the various teams that would visit their communities to verify and pay pensioners.
Also speaking, the Commissioner for Labour, Employment and Productivity, Chief Collins Cocodia, explained that Bayelsa had 55,000 workers with over 6 billion naira as wagebill at the inception of the present administration in 2012.
Cocodia said that with the implementation of the reforms, Bayelsa which was second to Lagos State as at 2012 in terms of public service workforce, had about 27,000 workers in its payroll thereby weeding out 28000 names from the workforce.
In their remarks, House of Assembly members from the area, Dr Peter Akpe and Hon. Benard Kenebai endorsed the reforms, noting that efforts were underway in the state legislature to institutionalize the exercise.
Other stakeholders who endorsed the reforms and assured government of support included the Special Adviser to the Governor on Political Matters, Hon Fyneman Wilson, Chief Francis Doukpola, the Ibenanaowei of Oyiakiri Clan, King Joshua Igbagara and State Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Mr Godspower Keku
On her part, Madam Lilian Oko condemned the ghost workers syndrome, certificate  racketeering, age and grade level falsification and other sharp practices in the public sector, and urged Bayelsa women to support the reforms for the sake of their children.
Describing the initiative as people oriented, the state representative at the Port Harcourt Flour Mills Limited, Hon Godwill Sele, called on the state government to intensify its efforts at establishing industries to create jobs for the people.

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