By Newscritic reporters
Tragedy was yesterday averted at Ohafia Local Government Councils of Abia State as irate workers chased out the Head of Service, HOS, Mr Dom Onwuzuruigbo for highhandedness and insensitivity to workers’ plight. The HOS is also accused of deliberately removing some workers’ names from pay schedule so as to pocket their salaries.
It took the combined efforts of security personnel including the DSS, Police and Civil Defence who were holding security meeting at the council headquarters at the time of the incident to rescue the beleaguered HOS from the hands of the irate workers, but not before he had been manhandled and his SUV badly damaged during the protest.
The HOS according to our investigations has been having issues with some local council workers who accused him of denying them their salaries since February. Sources disclosed that apart from cornering all the revenue contracts to himself and receiving jumbo monthly imprest, the HOS is said to had device other means through which he removes names from the salary schedule on the excuse that the affected workers were not cleared only for him to allegedly draw the salaries totalling over N6, 000,000 (Six Million Naira) monthly to himself.
Also the irate workers alleged that since Mr Onwuzuruigbo assumed duties in Ohafia council as HOS in 2016, nothing is moving in the local government as local government funds are allegedly diverted by the HOS to private use, while the council has continued to deteriorate and suffer without any achievement or development.
At the time of filing this report, it was gathered that the aggrieved workers have used charms to seal his office and vehicles, insisting that they do not want to see him in the local council again as ddoing so will be at his own risk. The HOS is also said to have invited some powerful men of God to neutralise the charms in preparation to resuming duties soon.
The HOS, who hails from Ikwuano is said to have served previously as Transition Committee Chairman, Secretary to the local government council, and education secretary respectively making him one of the powerful HOS around. Onuzuruigbo is said to be perfecting plans on how to counter the workers and return to office with enough security men to protect him.
Yesterday’s incident followed the release of list of workers to be paid salaries which excluded the names of many staff of the council. They said after removing their names the HOS will collect the money meant for their salary all to himself.