The 48 workers sacked by the National Emergency Management Agency have kicked against the termination of their appointments, after serving the agency for about one year.
The employees were hired in 2019 by the former Director General of NEMA, Mustapha Maihaja, following a “rigorous recruitment process”.
The affected workers said their recruitment was conducted by the Public Service Institute of Nigeria and approved by the Board of the agency, chaired by Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.
According to Daily Trust, NEMA cancelled the same recruitment last month over alleged non-adherence to “the laid down rules and regulations guiding recruitment into the civil service”.
However, some of the affected staff said they were subjects of injustice on the side of the NEMA management, noting that the termination of their appointments came as result of the rift between the former Director General of the agency and the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Management, Sadiya Farouq.
“NEMA left us in the middle of nowhere. Now, we don’t have our former jobs and the NEMA job,” one of the sacked employees reportedly said.
Some of the beneficiaries of the 2019 NEMA recruitment had worked for one year without pay and were awaiting enrollment into the Federal Government’s Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) before their appointment was terminated.
The affected employees, however, said they had forwarded their petition to the Federal Character Commission (FCC), the Senate President and the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment to seek justice.
Reacting, NEMA’s former Director General said: “Due process was followed as provided by Law, and specifically the NEMA Establishment Act; from the approval to recruit by the Governing Council (Chaired by the VP), the Management/senior staff establishment Committee’s engagement of Public Service Institute to conduct selection process, exams and interviews to the final insurance of the Compliance Certificate by the Federal Character Commission.
“What is of concern to me are the staff recruited — some happened to be workers elsewhere — were asked to bring their proof of resignation and corresponding acceptance by their former employers, and they complied and subsequently accepted the offer. It is a pity if truly they were disengaged after all.”
But the spokesperson of the agency, Manzo Ezekiel, said he was not aware of both the recruitment and the termination of the appointment.
“I am not aware of any recruitment that was done by NEMA. We have our standard as a country for employment and one of the standards is that jobs must be advertised in newspapers and I am not aware of any advertisement that was placed, or any employment that was done,” he said.
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