By Jude Atupulazi
Anxious to improve the level of performance of its employees in the local government system, the Anambra State Government has concluded plans to expose the workers in the third tier of government to trainings to learn administration.
The Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Hon TonyCollins Nwabunwanne, who disclosed this to Fides in his office in Awka, decried the condition the present administration found the local government workers in, which, he said, prompted the desire of the Prof Chukwuma Soludo Administration to improve the workers’ capacity.
‘At the local government level, we have started training. It is quite unfortunate that not even one of the staff of the local government can operate a computer. As I speak to you, we no longer have junior staff at the local government level; but on the other way round, it is not their fault because there are no necessary tools for them to work. So, when we came on board we started providing them with seats, tables, computers, for them to work.
‘Presently, we have 1,000 undergoing trainings for them; our intention is to train 5,000 workers across the local governments; we started with 1,000. In human capital development, we have done a lot – we are even sending them on training outside the state to learn administration,’ the commissioner stated.
He also disclosed that the government had also provided security at the local government level with tools, which, he said, were being used to curb insecurity in the local governments.
‘We have also provided 10KVA solar light, because when we came on board, every month, we spent N10.5 million. When we looked at the cost effectiveness of this, we couldn’t continue with it, and with less than that amount, we were able to fix the problem.
‘We also provided vehicles for them as one of the tools to move around, because all the vehicles at the local governments had been abandoned.
‘We have been able to pay up till date, their gratuities. We have also gone into paying the arrears of over N14 billion owed to them from 2018. We have been paying pensions till date.
‘We have also returned the revenue base for all the revenues at the local governments which were channeled to the state level before now. But we have taken it back from them – let the state have their own revenue base; let the local governments also generate their revenue; it will also help them boost economic activities in their areas. These are the little among the things we have done to strengthen the workforce of local government to make it a better place,’ Hon Nwabuwanne stated.