On Tuesday, about 467 ad-hoc staff of the National Population Commission (NPC) in Bauchi State took to the streets to protest the non-payment of their allowances. The ad-hoc staffers were hired by NPC to provide support for the 2023 census exercise in the state but were yet to receive their training allowances.
The spokesperson of the ad-hoc staffers, Mr Abbas Adamu, lamented that several appeals were made to the state office of the NPC to pay for the omitted facilitators and special work force trainees, but the response was not encouraging. The ad-hoc staff carried placards with inscriptions such as “No pay, no work,” and “We demand our allowances from NPC office”.
In response, Mr Hudu Baballe, the state Director NPC, applauded the ad-hoc staffers for carrying out the protest in a peaceful manner and assured them that their grievances and complaints were noted. He promised to forward their letter to the Commissioner and the National Headquarters in Abuja and urged them to remain calm as the commission would do everything possible to look into their plight.
The non-payment of allowances to ad-hoc staff is not peculiar to NPC alone, as many government agencies have been notorious for this. To avoid a recurrence of this situation, there is a need for government agencies to ensure that adequate budgetary provision is made for the payment of allowances to ad-hoc staff in advance. This will help to ensure that they are not owed and will also prevent protests and unrest, which can mar the success of any government program.
Furthermore, there is a need for government agencies to adopt a transparent and efficient payment system that ensures that ad-hoc staff are paid promptly and accurately. This can be achieved through the use of modern payment systems such as electronic payment platforms that can be easily monitored and audited.
The non-payment of allowances to ad-hoc staff can be avoided if government agencies make adequate budgetary provision for the payment of allowances in advance and adopt a transparent and efficient payment system. This will not only ensure the success of government programs but will also promote transparency and accountability in government agencies.
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