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Saraki’s Media Adviser opens up on Why Senate President’s 98 Aides were Sacked


Bukola Saraki Senate President 98 Aides
Sen. Bukola Saraki, President of the Nigerian Senate

On Thursday the Office of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki sacked 98 staff including the Director of Protocol, Arthur Ndiwe, who is said had occupied the position since Senator Ken Nnamani was the Senate President, reports Punch.

During a briefing of journalists, the Saraki’s Special Adviser to the Senate President on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu confirmed that some staff were let go and the move is not to cut cost, but to increase efficiency of the office, and also determine who will fit into Saraki’s plan for the Senate.

He further stated that the downsizing was based on Saraki’s discretion based on the judgment of a review committee which started four months ago.

He said, “It is entirely his (Saraki’s) discretion to determine who works with him, those who are helping his agenda, and those areas where gaps need to be filled. This is important for the efficiency of the office.

“It is not a negative thing; it is to ensure that the office is more invigorated and better positioned. It is possible some new people may also be joining in areas lapses have been observed.

Olaniyonu further said the members of staff were in three categories: those who were considered fit to remain in office, those who needed to be removed, and the fresh hands needed to be brought in.

“The first category of workers are those that have been found capable and competent to continue with their job, like all the entire members of the media unit.

“The second category of workers are those earlier seconded from the National Assembly bureaucracy to serve in the Office of the Senate President but now directed to go back to their civil service job, like the Head of Administration, Mrs. Folashade Adigun.

“The third category of workers are those whose services within the last two years were not all that satisfactory in the eye of the committee set up by the Senate President to carry out the repositioning exercise of his office.”

“Saraki had in December 2016 directed the National Assembly management to carry out a “comprehensive human resource audit to set new terms and conditions for retaining their jobs, with their retention based on their performance in their respective offices.”