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“I retired permanent secretary who could not calculate gratuities” – Gov. Umahi

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“I retired a permanent secretary in the Ebonyi civil service prematurely because the official could not calculate civil servants gratuities,’’ Gov. David Umahi said on Tuesday in Abakaliki.

Umahi made the declaration while swearing in new permanent secretaries and members of the state’s Public Complaints and anti-Corruption Commission.

“The deputy governor asked me to reverse the decision, but I declined and that will be his first request that I am not granting in the eight years that he had been deputy governor.

“You can still give me the elements which make up the gratuity even if you don’t know how to calculate it,’’ he noted.

Umahi said, however, that he might reverse the decision and urged the newly sworn-in officials to read widely; be prudent and magnify their offices.

The governor noted that the issue of gratuity of civil servants in the state was worrisome.

He observed that permanent secretaries in Ebonyi were among the best in the country and added that they should strive to maintain the Ebonyi standard.

“We have raised a standard in Ebonyi that makes us compete with the best in the world.

“Anyone who fails to meet the standard will be asked whether or not he comes from Ebonyi.

“Set examinations for yourselves on performance because Ebonyi should not be your limits in exposure and proficiency.

“The theory that helped me, which should also help you, is to regard public duties or services as your personal business,’’ he said.

The governor said that he diligently understudied the Israelis and it helped him to attain engineering proficiency.

“I was tutored in an Israeli firm in 1987 on a monthly salary of N650.

“I listened to my mentors and though I have just a first degree in engineering, I can debate favourably with a professor in the field,’’ he said.

Responding, Chief Sabinus Nwankwegu, Chairman of the Public Complaints and anti-Corruption Commission pledged to justify the confidence reposed in members by the governor.

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