Minister of Interior, Patrick Abba Moro
Nearly seven months after the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) recruitment stampede which killed 20 applicants and injured hundred others, the Federal Government is yet to fulfill its promise of automatic jobs to the families of the deceased.
The recruitment exercise held on March 15, across the various centres in the country was marred by poor crowd control and organization.
The Federal Government promised to offer automatic jobs to family members of the deceased while all applicants injured were to get a slot each.
On March 25, the Federal Government in a statement through the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, set-up a Presidential Committee to undertake a fresh recruitment exercise within 12 weeks.
The committee is to assist the Civil Defence, Fire Service, Immigration and Prisons Board to conduct a fresh exercise in place of the aborted recruitment.
The committee’s terms of reference among others, was to ensure that three family members of each deceased applicant from the aborted exercise, at least one of whom should be a female, were given immediate and automatic employment into the NIS and ensuring that all those injured were given immediate and automatic employment.
One of the victims of the aborted recruitment exercise, Peace Uruaka told Daily Trust said she is yet to receive the promised job.
Uruaka, who received treatment at the National Hospital, Abuja after the tragedy and on crutches until July is still unable to properly walk.
Asked if she has ever been contacted by the authorities, she said: “I have not been contacted. I keep on going to the Comptroller General of Immigration office to know how far but until now, they said nothing yet.”
Also, one Caleb Uloko who sustained injuries during the recruitment exercise and was revived the following day, said he was only contacted once to provide some details adding that he had not heard from anyone since then.
The Physics graduate lamented that the directive by the President to employ them immediately was clear, wondering what was delaying the process.
Another victim, Mercy Owonipa who was injured on her left hand during the recruitment exercise in Abuja said she has not been contacted for a job by anyone.
All efforts to reach the Comptroller General of Immigration, David Parradang, who is a member of the Presidential Committee on the recruitment exercise to react to the situation proved abortive as he did not pick calls nor respond to the text message put through to him by our reporter.
However, Minister of Interior, Abba Moro said the ministry was still waiting for the committee to conclude its job before enforcing the president’s directives.
The minister responded while fielding ques-tions from reporters at the Nigeria Immigration Service 50th Anniversary celebration at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
“We are patiently waiting for the committee to diligently do its job, give us the appropriate list and then, we will comply with Mr President’s directive,” Moro said.
Moro however, suggested that the delay with the process may not be unconnected with the cumbersome nature of arriving at the final list.
The minister said: “Don’t forget that experience has shown that immediately Mr. President made that pronouncement, a lot of persons started claiming that they were victims of the exercise and so, we are inundated with list of persons who have claimed that they were wounded or their loved ones died in the process.”
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