Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr. Seriake Dickson, has inaugurated 22 newly-appointed permanent secretaries to fill existing vacancies in the state civil service.
Dickson also swore in a new Special Adviser on Inter-Governmental Affairs, Mr. Austin Adigio, to replace Chief Rufus Abadi, who has defected from the Peoples Democratic Party, a statement on Tuesday by his media aide, Mr. Daniel Iworiso-Markson, said.
The governor, who used the opportunity to reconstitute the management boards of some state agencies, said the appointments were part of ongoing efforts to properly reposition the Bayelsa State public service to achieve greater efficiency.
The reconstituted boards are the Bayelsa State Physical Planning and Development Board, Hospitals Management Board, Scholarships Board and the Post-Primary Schools Board.
Dickson noted that the new permanent secretaries were appointed strictly on merit and in recognition of their hard work and contributions to the state public service over the years.
While congratulating them on their elevation, he described the selection process that threw them up as fair and competitive, stressing that the appointments were devoid of political considerations, in line with his administration’s policy of depoliticising the service.
The Governor was also full of appreciation for civil servants and some of their past leaders, including Sir Fraser Okuoru and Dr. Josephine Igodo, two former Heads of Service, for their innovative contributions.
He restated his commitment to prioritising workers’ welfare, especially in the area of payment of salaries and pension entitlements, despite the financial crisis rocking the state and the country in general.
Expressing concern over the issue of gratuities, he called on retirees to be a little more patient with the government, noting that if not for the shortfall in revenues, his administration would have reduced the backlog it inherited to a significant level by now.
He asked the new permanent secretaries to work closely with their respective commissioners to promote professionalism and improved service delivery in the various ministries.