Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq on Saturday sworn in 16 permanent secretaries — the first since he was elected over a year ago — amid a charge to them to be prudent, disciplined, and team players.
AbdulRazaq said the top civil servants joined the administration at a critical moment of the state when every kobo of public funds counts, commending the State House of Assembly for the ongoing oversight functions on government projects.
The Governor said no public servants or contractors 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 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,” he said.
“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 would 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 Otoge. Contractors, civil servants, and public officials are to note therefore that we must do things differently. There would be no protection for anyone who messes with public resources.”
Kwara State Head of Service Oluwole Dupe Susan, for her part, 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, prompt release of monthly allocation for the effective running of the MDAs, among a host of others, vividly attest to this,” she said.
Susan said such gestures impose on the civil servants, especially the permanent secretaries, the need to “respond appropriately to the 21st century contemporary Nigerian challenges as they obtain in Kwara” as well as justify the confidence reposed in them by the administration.
Hajiah Sabitiyu 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.
The Permanent Secretaries sworn in were Adenike Ibrahim Afusat (Ministry of Social Development); Shuaib Boni Ahmed (Establishment); Goshiya Jiya (Civil Service Commission); Musa Idris (Justice); Maryam Nurudeen Mohammed (Agriculture); Halimat Aduke Eletu (Enterprise); and Olayiwola Ayinla Abubakar (Health).
Others were Grillo (Cabinet, Political and Special Services); Alabere Razaq Babatunde (Local Government); Rabiat Abdulrahman Mopelola (Communication); Okanlawon Musa Olanrewaju (Water Resources); Yusuf Bolakale Abdullahi (Special Duties); Iyabo Banire Funke (Sports); Bamigbe Rotimi Williams (Energy); Adeosun Mary Kemi (Education); and Olorukooba Isiaka Yinka (Works).