The Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, has approved that no fewer than 108 staff of the state’s Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, (ISOPADEC) employed by former Governor, Rochas Okorocha, be laid off, citing irregularities in their employment processes.
Uzodinma said that the termination of workers’ employment was part of the Staff Rationalization and Restructuring of ISOPADEC that was recommended by Dr. Romanus Ezeogu-led Committee’s reports, as a solution to turn around the commission towards delivering on its mandate to the people.
The governor noted that the committee, which recommended the termination of their employment was set up within the short period spent in office by the Emeka Ihedioha administration, reviewing the employment process, and discovered the irregularities.
As gathered, during an investigation carried out by the committee on ISOPADEC activities, with a view to making the Commission more effective, it was discovered that the affected workers were employed illegally, without due processes by the Okorocha administration.
Through a statement released by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Publicity, Damian Oparah, yesterday, said that the administration was only ensuring continuity in governance.
He said: “The Committee after their investigations recommended the withdrawal from services of the Commission, all the 108 workers that were illegally employed by the Okorocha administration without due processes and the approval of the existing Board at that period. The employments were not done in consonance with laws that established the Commission.
“Based on the findings and recommendations of the Dr. Ezeogu’s committee, the Board of ISOPADEC has therefore approved the disengagements of all the One Hundred and Eight (108) Workers of the Commission whose appointments did not follow due processes and were illegally done as contained in the Dr. Ezeogu’s committee report, as they were employed without the approval of the then ISOPADEC Board Members.
“The Commission wishes to inform the affected workers whose appointment have been terminated to vacate their offices, and handover all Government and ISOPADEC property in their possessions to their Head of departments or the most senior staff in the various departments”, he added.