Few months after a secret employment
exercise by the Central Bank of Nigeria
was unearthed by SaharaReporters,
another government agency has been hit by a
similar scandal. This time the Federal Inland
Revenue Service (FIRS), headed by Mr.
Babatunde Fowler, a protege of Bola Tinubu, the
National Leader of All Progressives Congress
(APC) has been found to have overseen
recruitment excercises in violation of Nigeria's
rules of public advertisement.
FIRS, under Fowler, recently employed 3489
new staff. The recruitment exercise,
SaharaReporters authoritatively gathered, was
not preceded by a public advertisement of
vacancies to be filled and approval by the
Federal Character Commission as the service
rules stipulate. The newly employed persons
were inducted in Abuja last Wednesday. Fowler,
who was appointed last August by President
Muhammadu Buhari, had previously been
accused of indifference to service rules on
employment by secretly hiring 250 new staff.
However, his accusers, could not make the
charge stick, as he claimed those hired are not
full-time employees but consultants.
The latest findings, however, are accompanied
by substantial evidence including the list of new
recruits, complete with their states of origin,
dates of birth, phone numbers, email addresses,
academic qualifications, recommended ranks
and proposed duty stations.

The list, exclusively obtained by
Binggist showed that six of the new
recruits are of the position of deputy director,
while 10 are assistant directors. Thirty-four
others are of the rank of deputy manager, while
the rest are made up of senior managers,
managers, assistant managers and officers. All
the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory
are represented on the list. Akwa Ibom State,
for example, got six slots, while Gombe has 13.
Ondo State is a beneficiary of 13 slots. Lagos
State, where Fowler hails from, was awarded 14
Katsina got 18, Kano 15 and Borno 23. Rivers
State was given 14 slots. But in certain cases,
the list does not show the states of origin and
education qualifications of some of the new
staff, making it difficult to know they states of
origin and qualifications.
Wahab Gbadamosi, FIRS acting Director of
Information, told a news website last week that
relevant agencies of government approved the
"Your enquiry on the targeted recruitment at the
Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS refers. We
wish to respond as follows: Please note that
requisite agencies of government approved the
targeted recruitment by the FIRS. Due Process -
in recruiting into a Federal Government agency-
was followed; The FIRS is a conscientious, law-
abiding institution which adheres to statutory
rules and procedures; The FIRS is focused on
its duty to collect revenue to fund the national
budget and pleads that it should be allowed to
concentrate on its 2016 target of N4. 9 trillion,"
he was quoted to have responded via email.
Noticeably absent from the mail, however, are
whether the vacancies were advertised or not
and the names of the relevant agencies that
green-lighted the recruitment.

As with the CBN recruitment scandal, the list of
employed persons reeks of nepotism.



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