The government of Cross Rivers State has suspended Mrs Anne Odey, the Permanent Secretary in the State Ministry of Education, who placed a ban on morning and afternoon prayers in public and private primary and secondary schools in the state.
She had last week communicated the directive to all zonal heads in the State Ministry of Education citing security reasons.
After her directive generated much uproar among the people of Cross Rivers and Nigeria at large, the Ben Ayadi-led government dissociated itself from the move, stating that it was not aware that such a directive was to be given until after it had been done.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Security, Jude Ngaji said the directive to suspend the Permanent Secretary was given by Governor Ayadi, stating that the ban on morning and afternoon prayers had been lifted with immediate effect.
Ngaji said: : “It is true that police got intelligence information that Boko Haram were planning to bomb schools during morning devotion and therefore directed authorities in Ministry of Education to act fast.
“But the Permanent Secretary did not bother to revert to the governor or call for stakeholders’ meeting to that effect.
”So, the governor feels pained that she got such sensitive information without seeking for his advice and rather went ahead to issue a directive suspending morning devotions in private and public schools.
”In the light of the above, the governor has directed that the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Anne Odey, be suspended forthwith while the ban has been lifted immediately as there is no instruction to that effect from the governor’s office.”