Unrest In Nigeria Immigration Service Over Promotion by themomentng:
*Interior Minister, CG accused of complicity *Majority of beneficiaries from Katsina
*Aggrieved officers petition National Assembly *Promotion is not a right -NIS
A group of officers of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), has cried out over what they described as ethnic and religious biases exhibited in the recent senior officers’ promotion exercise carried out by the Service.
The aggrieved officers, drawn mainly from the Southern part of the country, accused the leadership of NIS of pursuing an Islamisation agenda in the para-military organisation by denying officers of other faiths their due rights to advance their careers.
In a protest letter signed by one Mr. Olubode Ahmed on behalf of the aggrieved officers, and made available to us, the officers alleged that the promotion exercise was marred by fraud, ethnic bias and discrimination along religious lines.
They specifically inister of Interior, Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazzau (rtd), the Comptroller-General of Immigration, Mohammed Babandede, and a serving Commissioner at Civil Defence, Fire, Immigration Board, an Assistant Comptroller-General (rtd) of conniving with the Acting Director of the board to tamper with the authentic list from the board to favour officers of the same ethnic and religious leaning (i.e. Fulanis and Muslims) at the expense of other officers from other ethnic and religious backgrounds.
The statement reads: “A close study of the promotion list showed that Muslim officers from the North, especially the North-West, were favoured above others from other regions. How does one explain that the first two pages of the list of officers promoted from the rank of Chief Superintendent of Immigration (CSI) to Assistant Comptroller of Immigration (ACI) contained the name of Muslim officers of Northern extraction?
“The question concerned citizens, are asking is; do they represent the most intelligent in the Service? Also, Katsina State alone produced five to six Comptrollers, while some southern states had none. Some officers have been on the rank of CSI, ACI and DCI for six to eight years and these Northern officers who were recently elevated in 2014 were again elevated at the detriment of their Southern counterparts. This amounts to insensitivity and the height of injustice and nepotism. Some officers of Southern extraction that were lucky to have been promoted alluded to the fact that their northern officer friends facilitated their elevation.”
Lamenting the perceived ill-treatment, one of the victims cried out: “For God’s sake, are some people superior to others in this country? No doubt, there is a grand attempt and plan to Islamise the service because by the time you are not promoted, you will be forced to accept Islam. This is so sad in a democratic and liberal country like ours. It is also to ensure that a particular ethnic and religious group dominates too. They should know that there is a God watching everything we do here on earth”.
Another affected officer, who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity for fear of victimisation, claimed that the list released was selective, not the authentic promotion list approved by the board.
“We are not in any way questioning the Comptroller-General of Immigration, (CGI), for promoting his personal aides, but we are against a situation whereby a particular ethnic and religious group is seen as superior to others.
“When Dambazzau came on board as the Minister, we were happy, thinking that he was going to make things better; we never knew that he came to promote ethnic and religious agenda. Babandede on the other hand behaved like an emperor who has no regard for officers and men. He plants his men in sensitive positions, who threatens and harass officers with postings and dismissal. The special candidates are yet received the confirmation message for training this are what the whole thing is asking for.