President Goodluck Jonathan has approved the composition and mandate of the Special Presidential Committee to assist the Civil Defence, Fire, Immigration and Prisons Service Board (CDFIPB) to re-conduct the aborted excercise recruitment into the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).
This was announced Wednesday in a statement signed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator Anyim Pius Anyim.
Anyim listed the composition of the committee to include Chairman of Federal Civil Service Commission as the chairman.
Other members of the committee are the Comptroller-General, Civil Defence, representative of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, representative of the Commandant-General, NSCDC, representative of the Controller of Prison Service, representative of the Corps Marshal, Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), representative of the Director-General, State Security Service (SSS), and the Permanent Secretary, Special Duties (OSGF).
The SGF also spelt out the terms of reference for the committee to liaise with the CDFIPB and confirm the actual number of personnel to be recruited; and assist the board by re-advertising the recruitment into the NIS with a view to starting the recruitment process afresh.
They are also to assist the board by processing the applications, short listing potential candidates and conducting the necessary interviews for the purpose of the recruitment exercise.
The committee is to also assist the board by following all relevant laws, public service rules and guidelines, to determine successful applicants and announce their appointment into the NIS.
Continuing, the committee is expected to ensure that three family members of each of the deceased applicants from the aborted exercise, at least one of whom should be a female, are given immediate and automatic employment in the NIS; and ensure that all those injured during the aborted exercise, are given immediate and automatic employment in the service.
Anyim gave the committee 12 weeks to conclude their assignment.
Meanwhile, indications emerged yesterday that the House of Representatives was not happy with the decision by the president to set up the recruitment committee.
Hon. Ahmed Idris (APC, Plateau), who moved the motion, said it smacked of impunity for the executive arm of government to undertake such exercise and ignore CDFIPB, a body constitutionally mandated to do the job.
“It amounts to disregard of the rule of law for the executive arm of government to unilaterally constitute a separate committee to conduct a fresh recruitment exercise when there is an existing Act of the National Assembly vesting the Civil Defence, Fire, Immigration and Prisons Service Board (CDFIPB) with such powers,” he said.
Citing Section 4 (2) of the CDFIPB laws, 2004, which “confers powers exclusively on the board to make appointments, transfer, confirm, dismiss and exercise other disciplinary control over persons appointed into any services pursuant to paragraph (a) of the sub-section,”
Ali said the president’s directive was against the law.
“The declaration by the president without recourse to the existing Act of the National Assembly undermines the sacred doctrine of constitutionalism and the rule of law which, if allowed, may verge into dictatorship,” he said.
However, no definitive decision could be taken as Hon. Ossai Nicholas Ossai (PDP, Delta) reminded that the House had already taken a decision on the matter.
As a result, the Deputy Speaker of the House, Emeka Ihedioha, sought the informed counsel of the Chairman of the Rules and Business Committee, Albert Sam Tsokwa (PDP, Taraba).
Tsokwa responded by saying he could not recall the existence of any such motion passed and asked for time to go through relevant documents before briefing the House today.
In another development, the Comptroller General of NIS, Mr. David Parradang, yesterday observed a one minute silence in honour of the over 20 people who died in the ill-fated March 15 recruitment exercise across the country.
Parradang, made the call yesterday during the monthly Comptroller Generalâ€™s parade at the service headquarters in Abuja.
He also used the occasion to commend the officers and men of the NIS who participated in the recruitment exercise for conducting themselves with high sense of discipline and restraint.
He said he was pleased that no shot was fired by any officer despite the rowdy session, “even when being pelted with rocks and other missiles.”
For officers who were injured, some of whom are still on hospital bed across the country, he wished them quick recovery.
The CGI further urged officers to refrain from making unguarded utterances or comments over the tragic recruitment exercise, saying that full report of the incident are being compiled to be presented to the appropriate authorities.
“Efforts are being made to present a comprehensive report to appropriate bodies on what transpired and the level of involvement of the NIS before, during and after the incidence,” he said.