It is though understandable that President Goodluck Jonathan has somehow stepped in to begin the process of mitigating the terrible hardship/situation occasioned by the actions and inactions of the Honourable Minister of interior, comrade Abba Moro, yet one is taken aback by the fact that up till now the President has not deemed it necessary to show him the way out of his cabinet.
Rather, all we have seen so far is that Mr. President has set up a committee to be chaired by the Chairman of Federal Civil Service Commission with sole mandate to conduct a fresh recruitment exercise into the Nigeria Immigration Service. As good as this new attempt towards ensuring the organization of a credible recruitment test may be, there is no guarantee yet, even if the exercise turns out to be relatively peaceful, that the same Nigerian factors that have almost always dogged previous and the recently failed exercises would not apply. After all, like some analysts would ask, are the members of this new committee no longer Nigerians? Are they coming from the moon? Anyway, Nigerians are patiently awaiting their own perception and version of service delivery.
Now back to the issue of comrade Abba Moro’s fiasco called recruitment test. It has been a wild rumour making rounds that if not for the failure of the recruitment exercise, the Honourable Minister had already allotted more than a thousand job slots to his people of Idoma ethnic nationality. Though this may be a serious allegation deemed to be peddled around by rumour mongers, the point is that there hardly can be smoke without fire. No doubt, like a friend would be quick to point out, there had always been similar speculation/allegation in the recent past hurled at not just the same leadership of the ministry of Interior but at the immediate past leadership of the Nigeria Immigration Service.
But, by and large, the crux of the matter is that going by the farcical arrangement put in place by the Honourable Minister Interior through the consultancy firm he outsourced the recruitment exercise to, one is clearly tempted to believe the plausibility of this speculation being propagated by Nigerians, especially the applicants themselves, some of whom had allegedly paid the sum of two hundred thousand naira and above to some officials of ministry of Interior. But by the way, what else could attest to the plausibility of this line of thought than the fact that for the first time in the history of Nigeria thousands of job seekers were compelled to throng the stadia spread across the states of the federation in order to face a killer recruitment exercise, implicitly perceived by scores of people as a mere formality?
Besides, that those who are wont to getting it from good authorities are inclined to concur that by dint of state by state assessment of the workforce of the Para-military bodies under the ministry of interior, that the Idoma tribe in Benue state has by far the greatest number of manpower. The same projection is equally alleged to be the case on the issues of promotion and placement of senior officers in virtually all the Para-military entities within the ministry.
Meanwhile, based on the foregoing and with hindsight, can we now extrapolate that the Honourable Minister could have most likely disagreed with the erstwhile Controller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service on the basis of primordial sentiments bordering on issues of recruitment, promotion and placement of officers as were then reported by some media? Whereas a number of people are bound to disregard the above scenario as most unlikely to be the case at the time, it remains my humble opinion that the reverse was the case, for some reason.
like I did posit in the wake of the Presidential directive to Mrs. Rose Chinyere Uzoma compelling her to embark on her pre-retirement leave (following series of allegations leveled against her reportedly by some of her colleagues) and the immediate composition of an investigative panel by comrade Abba Moro to probe her all activities in office that: “The fact is that if the Honourable minister was actually involved directly or indirectly in the job racketeering rocking the Nigeria Immigration Service, then truth of what transpired would certainly be submerged, no matter anybody’s efforts to the contrary” (see Daily Independent, January 24, 2013). Needless to say that it is on the basis of this failure or the refusal of comrade Abba Moro to make the report of this panel of inquiry public that I submit that his disagreement with Mrs. Uzoma was purely borne out of his serious attachment to primordial sentiments/personal interest, nothing more and nothing less.
Curiously, if the reports emanating from the social media are to be held on to, then the wide spread impression that President Goodluck Jonathan is either attempting to shield or is rather proving to be incapable of moving against comrade Abba Moro primarily because he is viewed to be the choice/surrogate of distinguished Senator David Mark is not only most unfortunate but it impugns the much professed integrity of Jonathan’s administration, especially as relates to his recently reported assertion that issues of corruption are somewhat exaggerated in Nigeria.
As has been contended in some quarters, if the immediate past Aviation minister – Mrs. Stella Oduah could be shown the way out of the cabinet allegedly because of issues of corruption, then it boggles one’s mind why President Jonathan would tarry further to do same to comrade Patrick Abba Moro – especially considering his refusal to voluntarily throw in the towel (despite incessant clamor on him to do so). Of course, there is no gainsaying that his continued presence in the cabinet is doing more harm than good to the seemingly battered image of the Federal government. Therefore, Mr. President Sir, it is high time you gave comrade Patrick Abba Moro, your Honourable Minister of Interior, boot- and there is no other time than now.
Onyiorah Chiduluemije Paschal – 08037738607.