Civil servants in Anambra have refused to obey the order of Governor Charles Soludo to report at their offices on Monday.
The government had directed all workers to come to work every Monday against the Independent People of Biafra’s (IPOB) sit-at-home order.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent, who monitored the situation in Awka, reports that most government offices visited were under lock and key.
NAN reports that the state government had, on March 25, sent out a circular directing workers to report to their duty posts on Mondays.
The statement was signed by the Head of Service, Mrs Theodora Igwegbe.
It read in part: “Following the need to reposition the service for better performance and productivity, His Excellency, Prof. Charles Soludo has directed that all public servants should henceforth report to their places of work on Mondays as they do other workdays.
“Consequently, absence from duty on Mondays or any other official workday without approval will be viewed as serious misconduct which will attract appropriate sanctions.
NAN reports that only a few junior workers were seen loitering around the state secretariat complex.
Even the Office of the Head of Service, together with the ministries in the block, was also under lock and key.
Most staff buses, which convey workers to and fro their offices were also seen parked in the secretariat.
Some of the buses included Route 1 for Awka- Ogidi-Onitsha, Route 2 for Awkuzu-Otuocha and Route 4 for Awka-Agulu-Ekwulobia.
Some workers, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that people might want to comply with the directive but had no means to get to their offices.
“We are here because we live in Awka and we can easily find the means to be in the office than those living outside Awka.
“It is not everyone living in Awka that can make it because in most areas there is no vehicular or human movement at all.
It was, however, observed that the Office of the Accountant-General of the state was open and the Accountant-General, Mr Chudi Okoli, and staff members were on duty at the time of the visit.
NAN also reports that some of the schools visited in Awka and its environs were not open.
Some stores and food vendors were seen trekking to Aroma, a popular junction in Awka.
A petty trader, Mrs Grace Anaelu, advised the government to revisit the issue to avoid unnecessary loss of lives.
“We do not have security following us around, so the issue does not require hasty decision.
“People’s safety needs to be considered before the marching order.
“I asked my only daughter to stay at home, if the governor sack her for not coming to work on Monday, let her come home and manage with me.
“Her life is more important to me than the salary,” she said.