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Abuja  –  The National Economic Reconstruction Fund (NERFUND) Staff Union has requested clarification from the Federal Government on the directive of all the workers to go an indefinite leave.
Mr Victor Onyebuchi, the Public Relations of NERFUND Staff Union said this in interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday.
Onyebuchi said that they wanted the status of the organisation to be defined following the directive by the Federal Ministry of Finance.
“We want to know if the government wants to merge us with other sister organisation or have any plan of organisation,’’ he said.
NAN reports that the Federal Government on Thursday issued a circular directing immediate shut down of the operations of the Fund.
The circular signed by the Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Finance, Dr Mahmoud Dutse said that the organisation had been faced with some crisis that had crippled its operations in the last three weeks.
It further directed all staff to proceed on indefinite leave with immediate effect.
Onyebuchi said that the ministry had no constitutional right to seal the office, adding that it was only the National Assembly that had the responsibility to do so.
He said that the union was considering the option of taking the case to the National Assembly if the option of dialoguing with the management of the ministry to restructure the organisation failed.
He appealed to the government to recapitalise the fund to enable it achieve its mandate.
“NERFUND was established by an Act of Parliament in 1989, so, for the last 16 years, the organisation has been in limbo because of financial incapacitation.
“We have not had substantial board of the organisation for the past 16 years.
“A committee – Interim has been headed by Permanent Secretaries, Ministry of Finance so they should appoint a substantial board to revive the organization,’’ he said.
Onyebuchi said that as law abiding staff, most of them had proceeded on indefinite leave hoping to get positive response from the dialogue with the management of the ministry.
NAN reports that NERFUND was set up to provide needed medium to long term financing to viable Small and Medium Scale production enterprises.
The objectives are to increase the quantum of goods and services available for local consumption and export, provide needed employment, expand the country’s production base and add value to the economy. (NAN)

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