Two years after announcing plans to employ10,000 teachers, Wike reduces number to 6000

Okenyi Kenechi

Two years after announcing plans to employ 10,000 teachers and failing to carry out the employment exercise, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has said the state government is ready to employ 6000 teachers.

Wike stated this during a Channels TV live programme in Port Harcourt on Friday.

Plans for the employment of teachers by the Wike’s administration are not new.

On the 8th of August 2018, Rivers State government announced plans to employ 10,000 teachers and 4000 non-academic staff.

The then commissioner for education, Taminosisi Gogo Jaja, who has since been redeployed to the ministry of water resources, revealed that the State Government has given approval for the employment of 10,000 teachers and 4,000 Non-Academic staff.

He said the move is part of steps by Governor Wike led the administration to rejig the education sector in the state.

“By the special Grace of God, as we resume for the next academic session, we shall be having new teachers in the sector. And therefore the Governor has graciously directed the ministry to initiate steps towards the employment of 10,000 teachers for our Junior and senior secondary schools in the state, he said.

Continuing, he said: “We believe that with the employment of 10,000 new teachers, the cry for the lack of teachers in the sector will be a thing of the past.

“His Excellency also understands that to run a school goes beyond the employment of academic staff. We are building new schools, we are renovating new schools, and we would maintain these new schools.

“You need security men, you need cleaners to assist the teachers as well, so the academic staff need non-academic staff.

“And therefore the Governor of Rivers State has also graciously approved the employment of 4,000 non-academic staff in our secondary schools in the state.

“And this non-academic staff include; security men, admin officers, confidential secretaries, executive officers, drivers, cleaners and clerical officers,” he said.

Also, Wike said on August 29 2018 during a visit by the World Bank Better Education Service Delivery for All (BESDA) that his administration had approved the employment of 10 000 teachers into the state’s educational system as a way bolstering access to quality education.

The state government abandoned the planned exercise despite raising the hopes of the indigenes who were eager to join the state civil service. It also failed to explain why the plan was dropped.

Meanwhile, Wike while speaking during the Channels TV programme expressed concern over the pressure being mounted on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Security Agencies to scuttle the will of Ondo people during the October 2020 Governorship Election.

He said while the people of Edo State fought godfatherism, Ondo State would respond to several unfulfilled promises made to them by the All Progressives Congress(APC).

Governor Wike said the national leadership of APC is not happy that they lost Edo to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and would do everything possible not to lose Ondo State.

“Having lost Edo State, everything will be done not to lose Ondo State because they know that will mean the end of APC.

“It is such pressure that is on INEC and the Security Agencies now that may lead to their compromising.

“I fear that INEC and the Security Agencies may succumb. But I pray they resist it and continue to defend democracy.

“In Ondo State, the will of the people are against them and incumbency will not work,” he said.

The Governor explained that the Edo State election has been adjudged as credible because the process was not tampered with and the result reflected the will of the people.

According to him, it is the first time everybody including the civil society groups agreed that everything went on well.

The security agencies, he said, did not allow thugs to overrun the polling units during the election.

Governor Wike noted that the PDP campaigned from ward to ward and the people resolved to stop Adams Oshiomhole from taking them for granted.

He said if what was witnessed in Edo State continues, then there is hope for healthy democratic practice in Nigeria.

The Governor lamented the impunity exhibited by the Inspector General of Police who ordered him to leave Edo State while his Imo and Kano counterparts were not harassed.

Governor Wike explained that the Inspector General’s role was premeditated because Rivers State Government is challenging the deduction of its revenue by the Federal Government for the Police Trust Fund.

The Governor described Governors as Chief Logistics Officers and not Chief Security Officers.

According to him, Governors do not have control over security in their States because those securing them can be withdrawn at will.