A group, the Bayelsa Restoration Caucus, has endorsed the ongoing public service reforms of the state government, dismissing protests over job losses by some people.
According to the group, the protests are misguided, ill-advised and diversionary.
On May 15, workers affected by the reforms, mostly non-academic staff of the state-owned Niger Delta University, Amassoma, protested their disengagement from service.
The protesters carried a mock coffin during the demonstration, shutting down activities at Amassoma, the university town.
The BRC in a statement in Yenagoa on Saturday, signed by one Chief Francis Doukpola, condemned the protest and urged the government to carry the reforms to its logical conclusion.
The statement told the government to bring those promoting violence, fraud and disturbance of public peace to book.
The group also urged the people of Bayelsa to note that Niger Delta University belonged to all of them and that they should protect the institution from collapse.
It said: “The institution retired people, who are above 60 and 70 years, in line with civil service rules and also paid three months salaries in lieu of the retirement of the affected people.
“The institution should continue the reforms vigorously, while not allowing itself to be intimidated by anyone or group of persons.”
The caucus threw its weight behind the administration of Governor Seriake Dickson, saying that his reforms had saved the government billions of naira.
It said: “The reforms have continued to expose payroll fraud, age falsifiers, certificate forgery, truancy, indiscriminate service promotions, inherited employment and persons having multiple employments.
“The reforms have also reduced the wage bill of the state from N6.7bn in 2012 when Dickson took over government to N3.9bn at today.”