Following the Nigerian Immigration Service, NIS, recruitment disaster that claimed the lives of no less than 20 unemployed graduates on Saturday, the Federal Government has offered automatic employment to three members each of families of the dead victims. The government also granted applicants who got injured, during the exercise, automatic employments.
This was stated by the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, at the end of the weekly meeting of the Executive Council of the Federation, FEC. The meeting was presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan and lasted for about an hour.
Mr. Maku also said the government had cancelled the recruitment exercise by the NIS; and also cancelled any similar ongoing one by all government ministries, departments, and agencies, MDAs; except the Nigeria Police and the military.
A special committee chaired by the Chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission, Joan Ayo, was set up to conduct a new recruitment exercise to fill existing vacancies in the NIS.
Members of the committee are the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, David Paradang, a Representative of the Inspector General of the Nigeria Police, Representative of the Comptroller of the Nigeria Prison Service, Representative of the Corps Marshall of the Federal Road Safety Corps and a Representative of the Commandant General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
It is not clear if the committee will ask job seekers to apply afresh or would use the initial one used for Saturday’s test. Each of the about 600,000 people that registered for the NIS test were made to pay N1,000.
Mr. Maku said the president “instructed all MDAs henceforth never to embark on any exercise of this nature in recruiting people into the public service, because what happened could have been avoided altogether.
“He has directed that henceforth no one outside the army, police, who usually recruit people through physical exercises, no other MDA or department of government is allowed to embark on this type of exercise that we witnessed on Saturday,” Mr. Maku said.
Mr. Maku said the entire proceeding of the FEC was dedicated to the families of the deceased.
“FEC noted with grief and deep regrets the tragedy of those who died in the ill fated Nigeria Immigration exercise. FEC in sending condolences to the families of the deceased; and also in sending special wishes to those who are injured and receiving treatment in various hospitals in different parts of the country expressed total regrets that this tragedy took place at all.
“Council members were full of grief. When the issue was discussed, we expressed our condolences to the President and Vice President and we indeed reassured Nigerians that all of us who have the privilege of servicing this nation at this time are feeling the pains with the families of our young ones who lost their lives.
“We reaffirmed our commitment to ensuring that this kind of tragedy does not repeat itself in this country,” Mr. Maku said.
He said the President will visit the families of the deceased to express his condolence as soon he returns from his trip abroad.
“Our hearts go out to the families of the deceased, this nation is fully behind them, the grief is not their own, the grief is the grief of all Nigerians and the grief is the grief of the government and the people of Nigeria. We regret it and pray for the souls of those who have departed,” Mr. Maku said.
“It is regrettable that this took place at a time that every effort was being made by government to increase spaces available for employment. For example last year we were able to get 1.6 million employed in the various sectors of the economy and the public service. However this incident is so painful to all of us and we will not want to see in this country young job seekers looking for job and losing their lives in the process,” he added.
Mr. Maku said members of the council assured that steps will be taken to address the various lapses in recruitment exercises into the public service to ensure that “all those who are qualified get access into the public service without going through this kind of experience”.
There have been widespread calls by Nigerians for the removal of both the Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, and The Comptroller-General of Immigration, David Parradang, from office.
Already, the Nigeria Human Rights Commission, NHRC, has commenced investigations into the NIS recruitment tragedy where stampede in various venues across the country led to the death of the job seekers.
Source: Premium Times.