Compulsory leave: ‘The Information Minister was not punished; she was only asked to rest’- Salami.
At the last Hall Assembly Meeting which held on Friday, August 19, 2022, the Hall Chairperson said that the compulsory leave of one month given to the Information Minister, Esther Subuloye, was not given to discipline her but to give her some time to rest from work. He said this was necessary to achieve better results. The notice given was published on Thursday, August 11, 2022, using the Hall’s letter head.
Days before the last Assembly meeting, the Hall Chairperson revealed to ABH Press, “The notice was supposed to be an internal memorandum within the executive council, to solve internal issues. However, a member of the executive council who was not okay with it decided to leak it out. Nobody was supposed to know that she would be on an official leave. All broadcast messages would have still gone out in her name.”
He explained that the compulsory break of one month given to her was a way to help her become more effective, as she was not really doing well on the job. He said this was done so that she would rest and re-strategize before coming back to work. Furthermore, he disclosed that the Information Minister would not be the first in the Inclusion Plan Team to be given a compulsory leave, as the Social and Buttery Minister, Ebun Adedeji, was given one earlier in his tenure, but it was not officially written. He explained that this was not because the SBM was under-functioning, but because she was at the brink of a burnout. He iterated that the compulsory leave given to the Information Minister could not have been intended to suspend her, as no one in the executive council has the power to suspend any other member of the council. The best that could be done would be to send an executive to the Hall Assembly for proper discipline.
In the Hall Assembly Meeting which held on Friday, after Mr Salami had given reports on the general state of the Hall, he was grilled with numerous questions. In response to those concerning the compulsory leave, he said that the executive council functions as a family where everyone is concerned about the wellbeing of every other person in the council. Therefore, when anyone is becoming stressed or overwhelmed, a leave might be mandated for such a person. He said that the action he took was given to address some minor “family issues” within the executive council. To confirm all that the Hall Chairperson had said, Miss Subuloye was asked to give her own side of the story. She simply said that all that the Hall Chairperson had said was true.
However, some of the legislators did not reckon the idea that the Hall’s letter head was used to address minor issues within the executive council plausible. They expressed their suspicion that something more serious was going on in the executive council. They argued that the use of the letter head of the Hall hinted at that whatever might have been going on within the executive council was not a trivial one. The members of the assembly condemned the Hall Chairperson and the Hall Secretary for inappropriate use of the letter head, violation of the constitution and abuse of power.
Following a lengthy back-and-forth, the house decided by votes that the Hall Chairperson and the Hall Secretary would write letters of apology to the Hall Assembly in 48 hours for violation of the constitution and abuse of power.