The Imo State Government has queried a senior editor with the Imo Broadcasting Corporation, Mrs Ottih Vivian, for complaining of non-payment of her salaries and that of her colleagues.
Ottih, a lawyer, had on May 4 in a Facebook post pleaded publicly to the state government to pay her colleagues and herself their over three months salaries.
“Nwamkpa Modestus (Uzodinma’s SSA) my dearest brother, from the blood and water we share as brother and sister, and as colleague in the journalism profession, you are the closest officer of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Imo State, Chief Hope Uzodinma (Onwa Oyoko) to me.
“Please my brother, help me inform our humble and performing governor that the entire staff of the only electronic media establishment owned by the state Imo Broadcasting Corporation, the famous Orient FM and Television have not received salaries for the month of February, March and April.
“It could be that His Excellency is not aware of this ugly situation. My brother and colleague, the worst of the whole scenario is that, I your sister, who just put to bed barely three weeks now, is languishing in hunger, lack among others.
“During the COVID-19 lockdown era, IBC staff were never found wanting on their duty post doing what they know how best to do on empty stomach and starvation.
“From my omugwo domain, I learnt that many have fallen sick without any kobo to seek medical services. The situation is as bad as that. Let me stop here so far as we wait for a fast positive response and reaction from His Excellency.”
But in a letter dated May 8 and signed by one Osuchukwu S.O for the Acting Director-General of IBC, the government said Ottih’s action was ridiculous with the sole aim of sabotaging the government.
The letter reads, “I am directed to issue a query to you for granting a press conference without approval from the government (being a public servant) where you informed the world that government was unable to pay your salaries.
“I am also directed to let you know that this attitude caused serious embarrassment to the Imo State Government, thereby ridiculing the government in the eyes of the public with the sole aim of sabotaging the government.
“Therefore, based on the above, I am directed to ask you to explain within 24 hours on receipt of this letter why disciplinary action should not be taken against you for ridiculing and sabotaging the government.”
A letter of suspension was later sent to her, suspending her indefinitely.