By Abiodun Esan
Ilorin – Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara, on Saturday in Ilorin, swore in 16 permanent secretaries, urging them to be prudent, disciplined and embrace team work.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the swearing of the permanent secretaries was the first since he was elected over a year ago.
Speaking after the swearing-in, AbdulRazaq said that the top civil servants joined the administration at a critical moment of the state when every kobo of public funds counted.
He commended the state House of Assembly for the ongoing oversight functions on government projects.
The governor said that no public servant or contractor indicted of mismanaging public funds would be protected.
“Our job as an administration has been made tougher by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic which has cut our revenue streams.
“It is crunch time. Even so, I believe that the pandemic offers us a unique opportunity to be creative, reassess our priorities and readjust accordingly.
“I like to repeat that we are not perfect, but we will not be found wanting in sincerity and commitment in the service of our people. Similarly, we welcome feedbacks and criticisms that fully consider where Kwara is coming from.
“I want to add that every kobo of public funds matters. Anyone entrusted with same will have the burden of accounting for it.
“This is why I welcome the oversight functions that the House of Assembly has recently embarked upon.
“It is good for democracy, accountability, transparency and development. It is in line with the spirit of ‘O to ge’.
“Contractors, civil servants and public officials are to note, therefore, that we must do things differently.
“There will be no protection for anyone who messes with public resources,” AbdulRazaq declared.
Speaking at the occasion, the Head of Service (HoS), Susan Oluwole, commended the governor for his support for the civil service since he assumed office.
“This administration is, in all ramifications, civil service friendly.
“The prompt completion of secretariat IV, prompt payment of salaries, pension and gratuities and prompt release of monthly allocation for the effective running of the MDAs, among a host of others, vividly attest to this,” she said.
Oluwole said that such gestures had imposed on the civil servants, especially the permanent secretaries, to respond appropriately to the 21st century contemporary Nigerian challenges, as obtained in Kwara.
She urged the new permanent secretaries to justify the confidence reposed in them by the administration by being alive to their responsibilities.
One of the new permanent secretaries, Hajia Kikelomo Grillo, who responded on behalf of her colleagues, pledged their unalloyed sincerity, loyalty and dedication to duty.
She also commended the governor for the confidence reposed in them to serve the state, which informed their appointment.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the newly-sworn in permanent secretaries included Adenike Ibrahim (Ministry of Social Development); Shuaib Ahmed (Establishment), Goshiya Jiya (Civil Service Commission) and Musa Idris (Justice).
Others were Maryam Nurudeen-Mohammed (Agriculture); Halimat Eletu (Enterprise), Olayiwola Abubakar (Health); Kikelomo Grillo (Cabinet, Political and Special Services), Alabere Babatunde (Local Government) and Rabiat Mopelola (Communication).
The remaining permanent secretaries were Okanlawon Olanrewaju (Water Resources); Yusuf Abdullahi (Special Duties); Iyabo Banire (Sports); Bamigbe Williams (Energy); Adeosun Kemi (Education) and Olorukooba Yinka (Works).