Following the plan by the management of the National Identity Management Commission, NIMC, to issue sack letters to over 1,000 employees of the commission, the Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria, ASCSN, has threatened to pull out thousands of its members on an indefinite strike from next week.
In a statement issued yesterday by its secretary-general, Comrade Alade Bashir Lawal, the association lamented that that the Nigerian government had continued to tolerate and encourage the lawlessness of the NIMC management.
The association further expressed dismay that the NIMC director-general, Barrister Chris Onyemenam, had continued to flout court processes in respect of his irked decision to sack more than 1,000 senior employees for no just cause.
The statement read: “The directive by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity that parties should maintain status quo pending the determination of the trade dispute on the matter and that of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation that he must subject himself to court process at the Federal Court of Appeal, Abuja, by staying action on the planned sack have been treated with contempt.
“As we write, Barrister Onyemenam, who claims to be a lawyer, has summoned the NIMC Board meeting for next week to ratify his decision to throw more than 1,000 senior employees into the labour market so that he can replace them with his kith and keen from Delta State as he did after he retrenched more than 5,000 junior workers in 2012”.
“It is inconceivable that after being on the saddle for more than nine years, Dr. Onyemenam has not been able to issue up to one million identity cards to Nigerians even though he had squandered billions of naira on the project whereas the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had issued more that 80 million Permanent Voters Cards (PVC) to Nigerians in less than one year.
“The tragedy of this situation is that Barrister Onyemenam who has spent nine (9) years as DG of NIMC and whose term has expired since 2013 has continued to sit tight, boasting that he would preside over NIMC affairs for 20 years because nobody can remove him from office. He is now playing God.
“It is this type of arrogance and impunity that have brought the country to its lowest ebb. This is why the Union has resolved to take necessary Trade Union actions to bring sanity to NIMC and the entire Public Service.”
The association maintained that it has no other option than to paralyze the entire public service since all legal means available to it had been frustrated by the Federal Government, adding that all the appeals made to the Federal Government to curtail the continuous rain of impunity in NIMC as perpetrated by the DG and his personal assistant, a school certificate holder that has been promoted to the post of Assistant General Manager, had fallen on deaf ears.