BY Sam Egwu, Lokoja
The Kogi State government said yesterday that the recent discovery of thousands of fake certificate holders in its civil service has justified its stance on reforms in the sector.
Speaking with journalists in Lokoja, the director general on media and publicity to the governor, Kingsley Fanwo, assured the people of the state that the reforms will serve the interests of the citizens.
He stated that the Governor Yahaya Bello administration discovered that the civil service needed a fundamental surgery to make it play its role of anchoring development.
He said, “The conviction informed the staff verification exercise. We have now graduated to the stage of verifying the academic records of the staff and our discoveries so far are mind-boggling. Over a thousand certificates have been confirmed to be fake by the various institutions, which were alleged to have issued the certificates.
“These are the people stifling the system and crying wolf of non-payment of salaries. This administration will remain undeterred by the corruption fighting back. What is right will be done for the greatness of our dear State”.
Fanwo said more certificates were being verified, adding that those who forged certificates will be prosecuted before the end of the year.
He continued: “It is a flagrant violation of the Public Service Rules and the Criminal Codes of the country. Governor Yahaya Bello is a hero who has placed the good of the state above his political safety. But the fact that Kogites are hailing his reforms shows that beyond politics, the people want to be served well.
“A teacher who forged his or her certificate to teach will have no impact on the academic development of his or her pupils. We must stop this trend for Kogi to develop.
“One of the key campaign issues of the APC is the fight against corruption and Governor Yahaya Bello will crush corruption anywhere it manifests”.