The Ondo State Commissioner for Transport allegedly slapped a director in a different ministry. The Commissioner of Transport in Ondo State, Nicholas Tofowomo, went to a different ministry- the Ministry of Works- and slapped a director there, Ondo State civil servants have alleged.
Staffers of the Ondo State Ministry of Works on Monday staged a protest to register their displeasure over the alleged assault of a Director in the Ministry by Mr. Tofowomo.
Mr. Tofowomo was said to have slapped one M.J. Afeniforo, the Director Mechanical of the Works Ministry, during an argument between the two men. Sources said the commissioner had approached Mr. Afeniforo for a tractor but he was told that all the tractors owned by the works ministry were being used for different projects.
The director reportedly explained to the commissioner that even the Commissioner for Works, Gboye Adegbenro, who has authority to release the tractor was at Ilara Mokin where he was inspecting road projects.
The source said Mr. Tofowomo called his counterpart at the Ministry of Works on the telephone, telling him that Mr. Afeniforo said the works minister had diverted all the tractors to his home town.
An argument ensued during which the commissioner allegedly slapped the director for arguing with him; an attitude, the source in the ministry said has been the commissioner’s habit.
Leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress converged on the premises of the ministry to protest the assault on Mr. Afeniforo.
The quick intervention of the Chairman of the Joint Negotiation Council, Solomon Adelegan, prevented the crisis from degenerating as he persuaded the workers against taking laws into their hands.
The Head of Service, Kosemani Kolawole, has invited the assaulted director and the permanent secretary of ministry to a meeting to address the issues. The workers have, however, vowed to deal with the commissioner.
Efforts by PREMIUM TIMES to reach Mr. Tofowomo were unsuccessful as he did not pick or return calls made to his phone.