The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) yesterday denied its involvement in any alleged demand by state governors on the Federal Government (FG) to retire all federal civil servants who are above 50 years.
The forum said it was also not aware of the reported demand by state governors on the FG to raise taxes and levy anyone earning N30,000 and above monthly.
An online publication had claimed that the governors presented the proposal in which they also urged the FG to begin implementation of the updated Stephen Oronsaye Report.
The Oronsaye committee had recommended the merger and shutdown of agencies and parastatals with duplicated or contested functions as a way to address bureaucratic inefficiency and reduce the cost of governance.
The demands, the online report claimed, was intended to augment the current shortfall in FG’s earnings.
However, NGF’s spokesman, Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, said the forum was unaware of such developments.
Bello-Barkindo said he could not comment on issues that have not been tabled before the NGF.
A senior official of the NGF, who posed some questions, wondered why the media was concerned “about some incongruous claims.”
The official corroborated Bello-Barkindo’s claim that the issues raised in the report have not been discussed on the floor of the NGF.
“I do not see any reason in the claim that governors are dictating to the President, and by implication the Federal Government to sack its workers.
“How many times has the President or the FG ordered states to sack its workers? Have you forgotten that we run a federation?
“Honestly, for instance, I do not see the feasibility of the governors on the platform of the PDP going to a President from the APC to demand that he sacks civil servants.
“It is no it the responsibility of the state governors to direct the President and the FG on how to treat its staff
“Can the FG direct a governor to sack workers or increase his state’s taxes?” the official asked.