Cage the ‘Judge’ over Amodu Shaibu’s death!
A Statement by Edo State Government
The attention of Edo State Government has been drawn to a report in the newspapers and on several online platforms to the effect that the State Government owed Mr. Amodu Shaibu, the Technical Director of the Nigerian Football Federation, who died in the night Friday, June 10, to the tune of N25 million.
According to a statement by the Chief Press Secretary, Peter Okhiria, “Let us state from the onset that his death is a huge loss to Edo State and Nigeria. We are certain that no one can fill the void of the shoes left behind by Coach Shaibu. He was not just a proud Edo son but also a perfect gentleman, community leader among other callings.
This is why he was invited to work with our young footballers after he was unceremoniously relieved of his appointment as Coach having qualified Nigeria for the World Cup. We remain deeply pained by his very sudden and untimely death.
The late Amodu Shaibu worked with the State Government, on a fixed-term contract basis, as Consultant/Technical Adviser of Edo State Football Development Programme, a Football Academy established by the State Government to tap the talents of Edo youths and turn them into world stars.
In deference to his pedigree, and having informed the Governor of how he was shabbily treated by the Nigerian Football Federation after the World Cup qualification he helped secure for the nation, and also admitting that the new job to manage the State’s Football Academy had lesser attraction than the National team Coach job he had, Amodu Shaibu was placed on a monthly salary of N2 million, which is hundred per cent better than what he was earning as Coach of the National Football team, and also making him the highest paid official of the Edo State Government.
The said fixed-term contract was however not renewed on expiration based on the dwindling revenues and the necessary cuts in government spending.
It is basic that a fixed-term contract ends automatically when the agreed end date is reached and the employer doesn’t have to give any notice. This means that a fixed-term contract is deemed terminated if not renewed.
In spite of the fact that the said contract was not renewed, the late Amodu Shaibu continued to draw his monthly wage of N2 million until it was stopped by the Office of the Accountant General in June, 2015, following the discovery after a staff biometric verification exercise.
The late Amodu Shaibu thereafter tendered his ‘letter of resignation’, in September 2015, even when the said contract was not renewed and had been deemed terminated, following its non-renewal.
However, on Wednesday, 8th June 2016, two days before his unfortunate death, the late Shaibu submitted a letter to the Secretary to Edo State Government, dated same day, claiming unpaid salaries for four months, totaling N8 million only.
In the said letter entitled: “Resignation of Appointment as Consultant/Technical Adviser. Re: Request for Payment of Outstanding Salaries”, Amodu Shaibu stated, inter alia:
“May I respectfully recall that I resigned my appointment as Consultant/Technical Adviser of Football Development in Edo State with effect from 30th September, 2015. The Resignation was as a result of my appointment as Technical Director of the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF). The Governor graciously approved this resignation with effect from 30th September 2015.
“I humbly wish to inform the Governor that my monthly salary was stopped by the Accountant-General with effect from June 2015. As a result, I was not paid for the month of June, July, August and September, 2015. The reason the Accountant-General gave for withholding my salary for the period was that he expected the approval of the Governor extending my contract for the next year. Since I have resigned my appointment, there is no need now for such approval.
“However, this letter is predicated on the need for the Accountant-General to pay my outstanding salaries for the period of June-September 2015. As a result, therefore, I humbly wish to request the Governor to kindly consider and approve the payment of my outstanding salaries for the period indicated above.”
Although the late Shaibu’s contract had long expired even before his ‘Resignation Letter’ which ‘took effect’ from September 30, 2015, and even though Edo State Government did not owe him unpaid wages as the contract was not renewed, the State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, however, approved his claim for N8 million, purely on compassionate grounds.
It is therefore totally false and misleading that the State Government owed the late Amodu Shaibu the sum of N25 million. We, therefore, make bold to state that the contents of a letter in circulation, purportedly written by the late Shaibu Amodu, is patently false. The letter contains claims that have no bearing with the financial transactions of Edo State Government. All workers, from lowest to the highest paid, including Committee Members are enrolled in our Oracle-based payment system and we do not owe anyone.
While we still mourn the unfortunate demise of this great Edo son and Nigerian, whose death has left a deep hole in our hearts and who contributed immensely to Sports development in Edo State, this clarification has become necessary to put an end to the misinformation and outright falsehood being peddled by political hawks who want to benefit from Amodu Shaibu’s death by portraying the State Government in bad light.
It is unfortunate and sad that while Edolites and Nigerians are still mourning this great icon, mischief makers have gone to town to reap from his death by crying more than the bereaved.
Even in death, Amodu Shaibu has our respect, commendation and solidarity.