The exit of Mike Okiro as the Chairman of the Police Service Commission, PSC has seen the advent of more revelations from officers of the Nigeria Police Force about the Commission’s treatment of officers due for promotion.

Some aggrieved officers of the force, whose names are withheld have written  Political Stew to keep us abreast of the injustice meted out on them by the former board of the PSC and the Police IG.

The officers, whose complaints were similar, but coming from different parts of the federation revealed how some of them had to pay an amount of money to get promoted, yet nothing was given to them, even if they were due for it.

Many others also revealed to Political Stew that they had gone to study further to hasten their promotions and be eligible for it at the appropriate time, only for them to discover that  the promotion will be based on bribery of senior officials of the PSC and the Police and payment of unlawful fees.

In several and different complaints by officers of the force, they said;

Those whose names replaced the ‘successful’ candidates never did apply for the job let alone taking part in written test, screening and medical evaluation as conducted to those who submitted themselves to the recruitment process, yet, they were asked to resume, at the expense of the reserved and those billed for interview. “Yes I was in front of the college  and a guy said he paid N600k to ICT office in PSC, but unfortunately on reaching there his name was not on the supplementary list,” a candidate recalled. However, there is one that paid same N600k and was fortunate to find his name on this supplementary list and can be identified. After all the stress, money spent on transportation and risks associated with traveling on our roads, some folks who didn’t make the cut initially are resuming camp at the moment right in our faces. This country is such a joke, some group of people believe they can go public with our names and still shortchange us for their personal gain, and they think they will get away with it. They claim the recruitment is over, yet their cohorts are currently resuming the various camps at the moment.

Nobody would formally address us on what is actually going on until it became necessary for us to write which I did on our behalf on the 6th of March 2017 to the Police Service Commission forcing the commission to come out with a public or formal statement as to why we have not been attended to. I have a hard copy of that letter acknowledged, their response to it and other documents that will prove beyond reasonable doubt our claims and willing to present them anywhere, anytime. 

To clarify some questions that might arise after one must have read through their reply/response on why have been left unattended to we decided to answer every line in their flimsy excuses below:

On the 26th of December 2016 a comprehensive list of successful candidates into the Nigerian Police force recruitment exercise 2016 was published. The number one information on the page, I quote says “the names that appear in this publication are successful candidates at the recently concluded 2016 recruitment exercise conducted by the Police Service Commission (PSC), Nigerian Police Force, Federal Character Commission (FCC) and other stakeholders in compliance with the presidential directives”.

We were then directed to report to our various training centers to resume training on the 31st of December 2016, which we obeyed. ASP Cadres both specialist and general duties were to report at Jos Staff College for Training, on arrival our names were on the list of those to resume which I confirmed by asking the officer with the list to check if specialist were among and I saw my name so did others only to be asked to wait. And this is almost three months.

On the 21st of March 2017, the police service commission (PSC) made another publication and from the first Paragraph I quote “The PSC says it will consider applicants on reserve list for interview for recruitment into the Nigerian Police Force”. On the publication of 26th December 2016 by the PSC, it said all the names on the list are successful applicants, it might also interest the public to know there was no reserve for interview.

The second paragraph from the same publication of March 21st, 2017 reads and I quote “….that candidates for specialist cadre would be invited for interview at the appropriate time”. How can this be possible when some of the names under specialist with the same status “for interview” are already in college training without any interview? And further investigations proves that most cadets in the college did not apply for the position but were admitted into the camp.

From the third paragraph, “He said the clarification became necessary because the 2016 SUCCESSFUL candidates were already in various Police training schools across the country”. The publication from PSC on the 26th of December 2016 as quoted above in the first paragraph reads all names on the publication are SUCCESSFUL, meaning all the names on the publication were successful. How come we are not in training with our fellow SUCCESSFUL cadets?

The only professional Body that sent a letter to the PSC was that of the Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria and National Secretary and Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria on the 3rd of January, 2017 as an advice to the PSC not to mix up those who studied other medical related courses with their members. The 8th Paragraph reads and I quote “The spokesman said that interview for specialists scheduled for Dec. 21, 22 and 23, 2016 could not hold because of a letter from professional bodies questioning qualifications of some candidates on the list”. How come a letter dated 3rd of January 2017 affect an interview slated for December 21st, 22nd and 23rd  2016? This letter was only for medical Laboratory Scientist but most of the specialist are Engineers and COREN which is responsible for Engineers never wrote a letter to the PSC and to be a member of COREN an Engineer must Practice for at least five years.

The 11th paragraph states that the interview was suspended, then how come all the specialists names was on the list the officers at the training colleges in Jos and Lagos gates had? Let’s assume COREN was involved, the PSC is telling us the inspectors specialist who were also denied entrance into the Lagos training school have to be members of This body with a National Diploma(ND).

The PSC wants us to join the 2017 recruitment when some of us with the same status are in the college as Cadets with General Duty cadre. Please all we want is to join our colleagues in Training instead of being shortchanged and replaced by people who did not even apply or people with Money and connection. 

From our investigations a committee was set to convert all specialist to General Duty and a memo was raised for that, instead of converting us the committee and PSC replaced Us and shortchanged those without connection and Godfathers.

In other complaints, another officer also revealed how his promotion was scuttled as a result of his inability to pay a requested amount of money, despite being eligible for promotion.

The officer, whose name is withheld said:

I am one of the successful shortlisted candidate into Nigeria Police Force as Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) specialist yet to resume training. First and foremost, I still cannot have a firm conviction that, under the leadership of President Muhammad Buhari that a magnitude of corruption of this kind can still be practiced. It was an excruciating experience for over 300 Nigerians as we saw our hopes dashed by pervasive corruption which tainted the 2016 conducted police recruitment. We are over 300 Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) and Inspector Cadets specialist for interview and over 200 ASP and inspector cadets on reserve that have been replaced in yet to be explained manner by the Police Service Commission (PSC).

I would like to recall that last year, President Muhammadu Buhari in his wisdom, as part of his administration’s resolve to strengthen security in the country, ordered the recruitment of 10,000 personnel to the Police Force. The process to adopt in the recruitment process caused friction between the PSC and the National Assembly who proposed different approaches. While the Senate Committee on Police wanted each local council to have nine candidates, the PSC insisted on equality of states as a criterion. However, the exercise which had hitherto offered hopes to several of us applicants that submitted ourselves to the processes required by the Police Service Commission (PSC), later went askew when the recruitment process was hijacked. Evidently speaking, names of candidates already published by the commission as ‘successful’ and instructed to embark on the training that precedes their full engagement into the Police Force, were covertly replaced with those who didn’t take part in the recruitment process. The names of successful candidates in the recruitment process which was published on the commission’s website on the 6th of December, 2016 and three other newspapers (Leadership, Tribune and Sun) between 26-28/12/2016, do not correspond with those eventually admitted to training camps. When we ( the successful specialist and reserve candidates) turned up on the 31st of December, 2016 at our respective training colleges in Ikeja, Lagos and Jos the Plateau State capital, were told by an official of the commission who addressed us that there are complications with them proceeding with the training and that once the PSC resolved it, we will be contacted to resume training. Alas majority of us thought we are finally getting it in this country, that the son of a common man can get a federal job without knowing someone who knows someone. On getting to the camp those of us billed for interview and the reserved were told to go home, and await further instructions as regards the next line of action. They told us that we will be called soon, now they are saying the recruitment is over. 

During our long almost unending impatient wait, we got news of people receiving mails and text messages to report on the 27th of February, 2017 was rumoured. In a sea of hope we found ourselves rather drowning in a pool of doubt struggling to stay afloat convincing ourselves otherwise from the fact that we have never paid or got to know anyone in high places to have found our names published as successful candidates to be enrolled into the Force. It was never an easy wait as we confirmed people receiving such mails and messages. After waiting for nearly two months, to satisfy one’s curiosity, on Monday 27th February, 2017, arrangements were made amongst ourselves to make enquiries. While some of us had to visit the Police Service Commission for clarification as to why we are yet to be called for the interview, and why the reserves have not been called to join our colleagues who are already training, the rest of us visited our respective training camps to see for ourselves whether or not the rumors were true. What we learnt from the Police Service Commission was rather shocking as a certain Special Adviser in the commission opined that, we have been replaced and that the recruitment is over, just like that. The shocker was when those of us that went to the Police Staff College Jos, which is the training centre for cadets ASPs, discovered that there was a fresh list of a total of 261 names sent to the college to undergo training which we can tell for a fact that almost all of the names on that list did not apply for the job not to talk of have partaken in the recruitment processes. It’s a pity such thing could happen in this county after they had gone public with our names. This is an absolute embarrassment on the part of a government that lives on the mantra of “change” promising to fight corruption to a stand still. With this sort of act, one cannot exaggerate the wickedness perpetrated by the Police Service Commission. In publishing our names telling the whole world we are to be enrolled into the Nigeria Police Force some of us had to resign from our old jobs if one must be able to report for training, some had accident during the course of reporting for training, not to mention the number of days we had to spend out in the open searching for accommodation and warmth in the city of Jos during a time the city experiences cold at its peak in the year.

 We therefore call on the general public, well meaning Nigerians, the Nigeria Judiciary system, media houses, national Assembly, EFCC and the office my President to intervene in our matter so that we can be absorbed into Nigeria Police Force unconditionally.

The new board of the PSC, led by former Police IG, Musiliu Smith is hereby called upon to help these officers recover their due benefits as this will go a long way towards the rejigging and restoration of the confidence of Nigerians in the Police.

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