Says agreement not binding on Rivers
By Davies Iheamnachor – Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has rejected the new agreement between the Nigeria Governors’ Forum of Nigeria, NGF, and the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria, JUSUN, noting that he was not consulted before the decision.
Wike insisted that what ever agreement reached between NGF and JUSUN on the continued strike by the judiciary union was not binding on the government of Rivers State.
Wike regretted that it was unfortunate that NGF signed an agreement with the striking members of JUSUN, on behalf of state governments and no one consulted with the Rivers State Government on the issues under contention.
Speaking at the inauguration of the Senate Building of the Rivers State University and the foundation stone laying for the construction of the Faculty of College of Medical Sciences on Saturday, Governor Wike stated that whatever NGF has signed is not binding on state governors.
He said: “Rivers State Government has implemented financial autonomy for the legislature and Judiciary. The judiciary has collected first and second quarters of their capital fund. We still use our money to do infrastructure for them in spite of that we release and give to them their capital expenditure.”
The governor, who disclosed that the state government has commenced implementation of “No work, no pay policy”, reiterated that he would not sign any agreement with the JUSUN.
The maintained that both judicial and legislative arms of government in the State were enjoying full autonomy.
He said: “Governors’ Forum is not a Government. It is an association of Governors to share ideas and not to sign agreement on behalf on State government. Even when they say something, I will have to come back to the State and call State Executive Council meeting, and we will take it as our resolution that this is what we are going to do. So, whatever they have signed with JUSUN, let me tell you people , it is not binding on Rivers State government.”
Wike noted that the Rivers State University secured the support of the state government because of the harmonious relationship between the university management and the governing council.
He said that amidst the ethnic coloration given to the appointment of the Vice Chancellor and Pro-Chancellor, there is visible proof that their appointment is justified given their achievements in turning around the fortunes of the institution.
Speaking further at the flag off of the construction faculty buildings for Basic Clinical Sciences, Clinical Science and Pathology of the Rivers State University , Governor Wike announced the award of full scholarship for all the 55 students already admitted into the college of Medical Sciences of the institution. According to him, the scholarship will last the entire period they will be on the programme.
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Medical Association President, Professor Innocent Ujah , who laid the foundation for the Faculty of Basic Clinical, Clinical Science and Pathology buildings ,observed that under Governor Wike’s administration the health sector has received unprecedented attention geared toward the sustainable development goals.