By Ossom Raphael
The Minister of Industry ,Trade and Investment, Otumba Richard Adebayo has distanced himself from the demand by the staff union in the ministry to redeploy the Permanent Secretary, Dr Ngozi Ngige.
The Staff Union on Wednesday grounded business activities and prevented access to offices in protest to what they described as a deplorable state of affairs of the Ministry.
The staff union were seen with placards with various inscription as well as chanting solidarity songs.
Addressing journalists during the protest, the Chairman of JNC, Comrade Onwuyai Okonkwo said the protest became necessary following series of consultations and intervention with staff on the state of affairs in the Ministry since August 2021 when the current Permanent Secretary assumed duty in the Ministry.
Okonkwo, said since the current Permanent Secretary assumped office, the Ministry has been in a deplorable state of affairs evidenced by low workers morale and poor service delivery.
In a swift reaction to the position of the workers, Adebayo in a telephone interview distanced himself from the plot to remove the Permanent Secretary.
The Minister said he has no hands in sponsoring the Union as he has a very wonderful relationship with the Permanent Secretary, noting that there is no reason for him to facilitate her removal from office.
Adebayo also debunked the allegation that he was behind every negative occurrence at the ministry, claiming that if he wanted to sponsor the removal of anyone, he will not do it through the Union but go straight to the Head of Service of the Federation to make such request.
Adebayo, however, noted that he has a cordial relationship with all the Permanent Secretaries he has ever worked.
On his recent walk out of the Union from a meeting to broker peace with the Permanent Secretary, the Minister said it was very important for him to do so because the Union was giving him deadline and terms for removing the Permanent Secretary which he has no power to do.
Minister called on the Union to Channel its grievances appropriately to the right quarters instead of involving him and advised the Union to find a middle ground to resolve the crisis.
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