Reps move To Criminalise secret Recruitment through government agencies

Reps move To Criminalise secret Recruitment through government agencies

The House of Representatives is considering outlawing secret recruitments by ministries, departments, and agencies of the federal.

With this move, any recruitment by any MDA without publishing the vacancy will become illegal and attract a fine.

This is being proposed within the Prohibition of Secret Recruitment within the Federal government officials Bill 2020 sponsored by Mr. Teejay Yusuf.

The bill, which is awaiting presentation, is titled, ‘A Bill for an Act to ban Secret Recruitment within the Federal Public Service and to form Elaborate Provisions for Transparency in Recruitment within the Public Service through Publication of Vacancies and for Other Matters Connected Therewith.’

Yusuf, within the explanatory memorandum, said, “The bill seeks to market integrity and transparency within the recruitment of personnel into the Federal government officials by making it an offense for a federal ministry, agency or parastatal to fill existing vacancies in their organizations if such vacancies haven’t been published.”

The bill read partially, “It shall be the policy of the federal to market efficiency within the allocation of personnel within the Federal government officials, also as transparency and equal opportunities within the recruitment and hiring of latest personnel.

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“Accordingly, it shall be an offense for any federal ministry, agency, or parastatal to fill a vacancy in their establishment unless the vacancies are well publicized before the commencement of the recruitment exercise.

“The publication mentioned in Subsection 2 shall be in two national newspapers.

“Anyone that violates the provisions of Section 2 (2) of this Act commits an offense and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding 100 Thousand Naira (N100,000) or to imprisonment for a term of fewer than six months or to both.

“Where a federal ministry, agency or parastatal commits an offense under this Act, the top of such ministry, agency or parastatal shall be guilty of the offense and punishable as prescribed in Subsection 1.”

According to the bill, the State High Courts shall have jurisdiction over matters within the proposed Act, while the Minister of Labour, Employment and Productivity may, with the approval of the president, make regulations for the implementation of the Act.

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Several MDAs are enmeshed in recruitment scandals, several of which are proved by both chambers of the National Assembly.

The Senate Committee on Federal Character had summoned some federal agencies over alleged secret recruitment.

Among the affected agencies are the Federal Inland Revenue Service; National Drug enforcement Agency, National Space Research and Development Agency, and therefore the National Open University.

Others are the Federal government officials Commission, the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, the agricultural Electrification Agency, and therefore the Nigerian Navy.

The House of Representatives, within the 8th National Assembly, had investigated the alleged secret recruitment of 909 employees by the financial institution of Nigeria.

The controversial recruitment was reportedly administered by the apex bank on the directive of the Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, with an inexpensive number of the beneficiaries being children and relatives of highly-placed persons within the country.

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Ironically, there was a crisis within the Senate earlier in 2019 over the utilization slots allocated to the lawmakers by some federal agencies.

Some aggrieved senators had vowed to resist the sharing method allegedly adopted by the leadership of the Senate to allocate the slots.

The agencies were said to possess given the legislators the slots through their leaders. But the slots were allegedly shared among the 10-member body of principal officers.

Thousands of applicants, who were shortlisted by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to fill positions for the experienced cadre, had recently written a letter to the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), alleging evil.

The applicants said while those that applied as graduate trainees had already been employed, others who applied for the experienced category had not been contacted by the NNPC since June 2019 once they took exams.

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