Recall that a mild drama broke out yesterday as civil servants shut down the headquarters of the Ministry in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja.
The protest was jointly staged by some staff of the Federal Ministry of Finance, Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and the Budget Office of the Ministry of Budget and National Planning.
The workers described the Ministry as being in a state of poor welfare.
In their hundreds, the workers expressed disappointment over the non-payment of the entitlements due to them. They locked all the entrances to the ministry and prevented vehicles and other visitors from gaining access to the premises, insisting that except their demands were met, they would not stop the protest.
But responding to the protest, the Ministry described it as unjustified.
In a reaction to the protest, the Management of the Federal Ministry of Finance, in a statement signed by Salisu Na’inna Dambatta (Director Information) said: “The payment of what the protesting staff called a Special Overtime (SOT), was stopped by the last administration in 2014 on the ground that it was not listed in any extant government Circular, Financial Regulations or the Public Service Rules.
“The sum of N1.2 billion computed by the staff union for payment could not have been budgeted for in 2016 in the first place, not only because of the paucity of funds, but also the fact that the SOT allowance was not part of the remuneration in the Federal Public Service.
“The Federal Ministry of Finance, the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and the Budget Office of the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, do not individually or collectively, owe any of their personnel their salaries.
“In view of the foregone, the Management of the Federal Ministry of Finance wishes to categorically state that the protests have no justifiable grounds,” the statement added.