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Police Recruitment: A Stitch In Time Saves Nine

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Police Recruitment: A Stitch In Time Saves Nine

-Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people – Anonymous

On Saturday, the Nigeria Police Force raised an alarm that the ongoing police constable recruitment exercise was marred by alleged corruption and irregularities.

The Force spokesperson, Muyiwa Adejobi, explained that the PSC list was subjected to scrutiny following the receipt of a series of complaints from candidates alleging corrupt practices in the recruitment.

He said the published list also contains several names of candidates who “failed either the computer-based test (CBT) or the physical screening exercise or both.”

He pointed out that some of those disqualified over medical issues “also made the list of successful candidates as published by the PSC.”

“Most worrisome is the allegation of financial dealings and corrupt practices leading to the outcome where unqualified and untrainable individuals have been shortlisted,” he stated.

Recall that the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Kayode Egbetokun, had written a letter of objection to the Chairman of the PSC informing him of the discoveries in the list. The reaction of the IGP was without prejudice to the power of the commission to recruit for the police as ruled by the Supreme Court but this power does not include the power to recruit unqualified and untrained individuals for the police.

I was expecting the Police Service Commission to respond to the investigated allegations against them, but rather, the jittery response came from a Joint Union of Police Service Commission.

What immediately came to mind was that “the majority of the union members must be involved in the allegation!”

I said this because the Police Service Commission has a new chairman who has even visited the Inspector General of Police with his management team. Ikechukwu Ani is the spokesperson for the Police Service Commission, so why the haste by the Joint Union of Police Service Commission to respond to the genuine statement coming from the Nigeria Police?

I am very sure some of the Joint Union of the Staff of the Police Service Commission are jittery, as a reliable source told me that the police are investigating some cases of corrupt practices, as there are about 10 cases under investigation against the staff of the Police Service Commission.

I am hoping that the Joint Union Congress of the Police Service Commission will be bold enough to rush to issue a press release to apologise to the entire Nigeria Police when the suspects are paraded for the recruitment racketeering.

The Chairmen of the Joint Union Congress of the Police Service Commission, Ogundeji Remi Ally, and Adoyi A. Adoyi, Chairman, NCSU. Chairman, ASCSN, respectively, tried to justify the fraud in the recruitment by saying that despite the unambiguity in the powers of the Police Service Commission, PSC, as clearly spelt out by the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the subsequent interpretation of such powers by the Supreme Court, the Nigeria Police Force will still not allow the Commission to exercise its constitutional powers to appoint persons into the Nigeria Police Force.

The Inspector General of Police, IGP Kayode Egbetokun, is not usurping the powers of the PSC but rather calling for transparency and integrity in the recruitment exercise, as it was glaring that money exchanged hands in the recruitment exercise, and I won’t be surprised if those behind the corrupt practices are members of the Joint Union of the Staff of the Police Service Commission for rushing out to respond to the genuine statement from the Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi.

I am shocked that the union could say, “Commission is at a loss as to why it is only during recruitment exercises those police confrontation manifests, suggesting obvious hidden interests and corrupt tendencies.”

I wish to remind the Joint Union of the Staff of the Police Service Commission that the consequences of recruiting unqualified candidates will have several consequences for the Nigeria Police, as recruiting unqualified candidates who lack the necessary skills and knowledge to perform their job effectively will lead to lower productivity levels within the Nigeria Police.

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Also, recruiting unqualified candidates will require additional training and resources to bring them up to speed, resulting in increased costs for the Nigeria Police. We should not forget that recruiting unqualified candidates will surely lead to low morale, which can damage the Nigeria Police’s reputation and community satisfaction levels.

Overall, recruiting unqualified candidates will have a range of negative consequences for the Nigeria Police, impacting its personnel morale, reputation, and legal standing.

The union appears to have lost sight of the fact that the Nigeria Police will bear the brunt of the recruitment of unqualified individuals into the force.

All over the world, the police are saddled with investigations of cases, and from a reliable source, the police have done a thorough investigation as I mentioned earlier, and more candidates are still coming up with evidence that the recruitment exercise is flawed with corruption.

I am surprised that the union is demanding that the Police Service Commission provide a forensic audit of the computer-based test results and compare them with the list released by the same commission. I want to remind the union that “Nemo iudex in causa sua” (no one should be a judge in their own cause).

The predicaments and experiences of potential recruits who had gone through numerous rigorous screening processes only to be rejected out of concern for them bother me much.

I want to use the opportunity to urgently call on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to constitute a committee to probe the recruitment exercise and put more searchlight on the activities of the Joint Union of the Staff of the Police Service Commission in the recruitment exercise, especially on the allegations of financial dealings and corrupt practices, as there are already established investigations.

A stitch in time saves nine.

Adewole Kehinde is a public affairs analyst based in Abuja and can be reached via 08166240846. email: [email protected]

 

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