By Okey Alozie
Heavy scandal is now rocking the Ministry of Education located inside Imo State Secretariat complex Owerri following allegations of fraud.
Our source revealed that some secret extortion of money complete with omission of worker’s salaries have been alleged to be taking place there since last year.
Another blunder was that the names of those in accelerated teachers programme were tampered with as names of the beneficiaries listed for confirmation and regularization were substituted name with other names outside the original list. Meanwhile, the community Government council teachers (CGC) who were actually regularized as at November 2017 are now seriously complaining of non-payment of over 4 months salaries after the State governor had dolled out big amount of money to pay the youth must work teachers who have suffered in the system.
Some of the aggrieved C.G.C teachers stormed Ministry of Education block Tuesday to register their anger to the commissioner and permanent secretary. Our reporter who spotted them at the complex observed that the matter was not settled and as a result the aggrieved teachers have vowed to take the matter up and possibly organize a protest over non-payment of their 4 months salaries.
Investigation revealed that some of them were frustrated out of the system.
Moreover, the principals and head teachers who submitted the lists were alleged to be biased on the ground that only those who danced to their tune were favoured.
Further investigation also revealed that SEMB boss E.O Chukwu and his men did marvelous job by pruning down the list from above 2.800 C.G.C teachers to 1644 who were eventually given confirmation. A source disclosed to Trumpeta that those complaining of extortion and omission are not true C.G.C teachers but ghost workers who want to work in more than 2 establishments. All efforts made to see the Commissioner and the Perm Sec of the Ministry proved abortive. Meanwhile concerned Imolites have called on those in authority to set up investigation panel to ascertain the true position of the matter.
Trumpeta also gathered that top government officials were fingered in the alleged fraud which is now brining bad image to the Ministry of Education.
We also gathered that most of the substitution and extortion happened immediately governor Okorocha dissolved his cabinet last year. Information revealed that most activities of the ministry was hijacked in the absence of a commissioner. After her appointment, Mrs Getrude Oduka fought back to correct all the mistakes made in her absent.