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Central Bank, Nigerian Customs, NNPC Limited, Others Engage In Secret Recruitment, May Face Probe 

December 3, 2022

This is despite the employment embargo imposed by the Federal Government since 2020.

The Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigerian Customs Service and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Limited are among several other federal agencies that have continued to engage in backdoor recruitment, findings have shown.

This is despite the employment embargo imposed by the Federal Government since 2020.

SaharaReporters had in November reported that the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) also recruited 70 new staff for the agency without advertising the vacancies.

It had been reported that Orji Ogbonnaya, the NEITI Executive Secretary carried out the underground recruitment which is characteristic of the shady recruitment processes in several federal agencies and commissions.

The Nigerian government may sanction those involved in the illegality, including the Federal Inland Revenue Service, among other MDAs, according to findings by PUNCH.

Investigations showed that some agencies issued employment letters to jobseekers, which were not accredited by the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation and the Federal Civil Service Commission, while others simply replaced retired or dead officials with friends and family members.

But the replacements were done without the approval of the OHCSF and the Federal Civil Service Commission.

Only recently, some civil servants, who were engaged in employment racketeering, were caught in the Federal Ministry of Works.

It was also reported how the OHCSF uncovered over 1,500 civil servants with fake employment letters in a ministry.

Corroborating this, the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, said her office had detected a total of 1,618 workers whose letters of employment were either fake or illegal in the Federal Civil Service.

This is despite the embargo placed on employment by the government.

In 2019, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation was reported to have employed many individuals without following the due recruitment process.

Many groups, including the Niger Delta Youth Consort of Nigeria, protested against the NNPC for excluding the region and southerners in the secret recruitment.

The National Coordinator of the NDYCN, Chuks Onuoha, described the practice as unacceptable, but the then NNPC spokesman, Kenny Obateru, denied the recruitment.

According to him, what the NNPC management did was to fill the vacancies with personnel who were already in the system and were qualified rather than recruiting fresh ones from outside the system.

But applicants, who got to the final stage of the screening process, accused the oil giant of substituting their names with favoured candidates.

“The NNPC replaced most of the EH positions under the guise of a hurriedly planned scheme codenamed Internal Open Resource where some people, who contracted third party staff members and did not meet the requisite experience and qualifications in the advertised EH vacancies, are being deployed through the backdoor in an unfortunate and disappointing bid to jettison the EH merit list,” the President, Transparency in Recruitment at Ministries, Departments and Agencies, Felix Sunday, had lamented then.