The coalition of Nasarawa State Health Professional Associations had embarked on an indefinite industrial action on the June 18 after an initial seven days warning strike, due to the several demands they have made.
These included the non-implementation of promotion and annual increment for over 10 years, non-implementation of the New Minimum Wage Bill Act, non-implementation of the COVID-19 MoU on hazard allowance and life insurance for all health workers in the state, among other demands.
The health workers also demanded the payment of their entitlements, adding that the government has yet to give a definite timeframe or make any commitment to their demands.
The Nasarawa State government says it is collaborating with the security agencies to secure the release of over 30 people kidnapped in the state.
According to the government, the persons were recently kidnapped by armed men and taken to the bush around the Udege Development Area in Nasarawa Local Government Area of the state.
The state governor, Abdullahi Sule, revealed the effort of the government to rescue them while delivering his opening remarks at an emergency Executive Council Meeting held on Friday at the Government House in Lafia, the state capital.
He also used the opportunity of the meeting to give an update on the emerging security challenges, especially in the western senatorial zone of the state.
Governor Sule decried the recent incident in which occupants of three vehicles, numbering more than 30 were kidnapped by gunmen.
He said, “We are working along with the Federal agencies, the police, Department of State Services (DSS), and the military to ensure that we are able to rescue the people who have been kidnapped and taken to the bush in that area.”
“The government is on top of the situation and we are going to do the best we can to ensure that they are released,” the governor promised.
He added that the state government was taking measures to reduce the inherent risk in the area, especially around the major road leading to Benue State.
Meanwhile, the victim’s mother, Maimuna Aliyu wants the law to prevail.
“We got the information that he was the one but since he wasn’t apprehended we were mute. Since the government has arrested him and he confessed to the crime, they should help by giving him the punishment he deserves,” she said.
Adam’s victims are said to be between the ages of three months and one and the half years.
It was gathered that the abused victim, who has been unable to defecate properly since the incident happened, has undergone three surgeries where a section was opened in her stomach to enable her to defecate as she awaits the fourth one soon.
Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule, has relieved Mr Ahmed Tijjani of his appointment as the Secretary to the State Government (SSG).
The Permanent Secretary of the Government House Administration, Hamza Gayam, announced this in a statement on Monday.
According to the statement, Governor Sule asked Tijjani to hand over all the government properties in his possession to the Permanent Secretary (Cabinet Affairs and Special Duty) in the office of the SSG with immediate effect.
This followed Tijjani’s indictment by the Nasarawa State House of Assembly for alleged misappropriation of over N200 million.
The money was said to be part of the N1 billion approved for the renovation and fencing of government secondary schools in the state.
The former SSG was alleged to have committed the offence when he served as the Commissioner for Education during the previous administration.
He said few minutes to the hour of twelve, Wednesday night,gunmen stormed the residence of the Chairman at Bukan Sidi area of Lafia, the Nasarawa State capital and whisked him away to an unknown destination.
Bola Longe added that the police have intensified surveillance ensure immediate release of Mister Masin.
The Chief Judge of Nasarawa State, Justice Suleiman Dikko, has granted clemency to 16 inmates in the state.
Justice Dikko ordered their release on Thursday when he visited a correctional facility where the inmates were held in Lafia, in the state capital.
According to him, this is in compliance with the directive of the Chief Justice Of Nigeria, Justice Muhammad Tanko, to decongest correctional facilities across the country as part of measures to curb the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
The Nasarawa State government has discharged 19 coronavirus (COVID-19) patients out of the 32 positive cases recorded in the state.
Governor Abdullahi Sule disclosed this on Monday at a briefing with journalists shortly after inspecting the ongoing work at the Infectious Diseases Control and Diagnostic Centre in Lafia, the state capital.
He noted that the 19 patients tested negative after receiving treatment and have been discharged, adding that the state now has 12 COVID-19 active cases and one death.
The governor was delighted that although the government has set up several isolation centres across the state, there were no patients at the facilities.
He said, “We have been very lucky, we have a total of 32 cases. As at this morning (Monday), we have had one death and 19 (recovered patients) that have already been discharged.
“They have turned negative again and they have been discharged. Of the 32 cases, we only have 12 active cases.”
On the progress of work at the centre, Governor Sule revealed that the first phase of the project – the physical structure of the facility – was at 95 per cent completion.
According to him, the government is rushing to complete the project in order to adequately prepare for future emergencies, in terms of mitigating the outbreak of infectious diseases such as Lassa Fever, Ebola, and other viruses that may surface in the future.
The governor explained that the second phase of the project – equipping the facility – would be capital intensive but his administration was committed to completing the project.
“The second phase, which is more important and actually more economically demanding, is the aspect of equipment and we are working on that at the moment.
“It will require a lot of investment in the area of research, testing, and various laboratories,” he added.
Governor Sule noted that the centre would operate in synergy with the Dalhatu Araf Specialists Hospital and the State School of Nursing, all located within the vicinity of the facility.
He said, “There is going to be synergy between the three institutions around. There will also be lots of collaboration, especially with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
“We have been talking to them (NCDC), with the Federal Ministry of Health and the State Ministry of Health, as well as all the other major hospitals that we have around, including our PHC unit.”
“The local government chairmen are treating us badly, so we felt we should come out to express our grievances, in particular, the issue of percentage payment in addition to non-payment of gratuities for more than ten years.
“Our demand is that we have not received our March and April pensions. Surprisingly, the chairmen are now saying that they will pay us less than 50 per cent March pensions.
“We say no to this. This cannot work! We are already paid in arrears so why the percentage payment? We can appreciate the fact that the economy is down but that does not mean we should be treated anyhow,” Ladan said.
One of the pensioners, Cecilia Ajegena said she retired six years ago and has not being paid both her pension and gratuity.
“Government has not paid me my pension neither have they paid me any gratuity since we retired six years ago. I served this nation through the local government system, what offence have I committed that government cannot respect me today?
“I am supposed to be in an eye clinic to take care of my eye but I don’t have my pension paid and not only that, gratuity is still hanging there.
“Instead of them to appreciate it, they say, they want to slash the money by 50 per cent. Which money will I use to feed my children and take care of myself,? she questioned.
The Nasarawa State Deputy Governor, Emmanuel Akabe, while responding to the pensioners alongside the Secretary of the State Government, Aliyu Tijjani, and other cabinet members promised swift government intervention.
“I have come here to today to speak on behalf of the governor of Nasarawa state. I would want you to mandate, your executive members, I will ask the local government chairmen, their ALGON chairman to seat with your executive today and let ALGON tell us why they have not been paying and what plans they have to pay,” he said.
He promised that the meeting between the Local government officials and representative of the pensioners would hold before the end of the day.