Ministers have turned Director-Generals and the heads of various government parastatals under them idle by turning them into protocol officers, Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC) Prof. Julius Okojie said in Abuja yesterday.
Explaining why he came late to an event organised by NUC and the National Board for Technology Incubation (NBTI) in Abuja, Prof. Okojie said he was “busy standing around, going about with and ensuring that I see off the minister; this is what they have turned us to in the country.”

“We roam about with the ministers too much, and in the process we neglect our primary responsibilities in our parastatals,” he said.

According to Prof. Okojie, the ministers have turned the DGs of parastatals under their ministries into protocol officers instead of allowing them to face the duties they were appointed to do.

He said many of the DGs were workaholic and dedicated before they were appointed as DGs, but the moment they got the jobs the ministers turned them into lazy individuals because “when the minister is around you must go and stay with him or her.”

He said many highly placed government officials “are mere errand boys who do all the biddings of the minister even if some of what they do are not their primary duties.”

He also said, “I was with the minister (of education) at the other event. You know I must welcome the minister properly. I must ensure that she leaves before I left. I must see her to her car, I must stand where she is, I must………This is what they have turned us, we the heads of parastatals into— protocol officers. They are rendering us idle in our primary responsibilities because we follow them and roam about with them.”

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