The Federal Appointments : Issues for Federal Character By Alex Agbo

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As young Nigerian, way back in 2001, I was seeking admission into one of Nigeria’s
many universities. One issue came up, namely, catchment area. Whatever that means!

Cut off marks for different people by those close their states are to the university.

In 2006, I went to a state polytechnic to write the IJMB examination for direct entry into the university, then I met another sectional invention in the Nigerian socio-political lexicon,namely: Indigene.

We were made to pay higher than their ‘indigenes’.

Then we came out of school to work. Even though we had better certificates than some persons, we were told that we were not from some states or region. Another word came up: Quota!

Then for service to our fatherland, we need ethno religious considerations to see us
through the selections.

Now we who have seen the dangers of enthroning mediocrity in the bid to satisfy all comers have come to say NO to what has put this country back by centuries.

We have been victims, shortchanged on the altar of mediocrity.

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That’s why people cry ‘Away with federal character!’.

It is on this strength that many people have come to hail Buhari’s current
appointments.

It is a welcome development by all standard. This is clear to progressive people. Do you imagine that some people have lost chances to mediocre competitors, just because of federal character?

You would be told that Kogi’s slot has been filled or Adamawa’s slot has not yet
been filled, or that it is the turn of Mr A to be so so even if he doesn’t meet the
standard.

This federal character is the root of nepotism. It has bred all manners of shady deals in government.

A strange phenomenon in Nigeria is the sale of jobs, which has become fait accompli.

A certain director or commissioner may just decide to sell off his state’s slot to people from other states by simply changing their
states of origin, which is just a piece of paper.

That would have denied many people
their jobs. That’s why you have touts in police uniform, illiterates working in the ministry of education, doctors working for nine solid years without certificate verification, while qualified people roam the streets.

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It is in the light of these that the Buhari government has decided that no more
federal character.

The government has seen that federal character fills the public sector with all manners of characters. Merit can only be found in the north. Yes!

That’s why more than 90% of appointments so far have come from there, the land of
the Saints.

And to think it is an indictment on the integrity of the Igbos, none of
them has been appointed into the government of the saintly north.

‘Dem too like
money’!

They shouldn’t come and distort the plans of the government.

Look, APC and Buhari must get serious in their doing. It shouldn’t be this Alice-in-wonderland stories.

There are men of unimpeachable characters across Nigeria, in as much as we deplore the crude application of federal character, we
also urge the federal government to look beyond using that as a cover up to employ
only the president’s kinsmen and cronies into office.

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Wait a minute, is it not because there is not a single man of integrity that Colonel Hamid was appointed as the new head of Customs? Yes!

That’s what I am saying. Please Buhari must get serious.

If Nigerians are not to think of him as a tribalist and an uncaring president. He has already insulted the sensibility of many Nigerians with his lopsided appointments. Enough of that.

*Alex Agbo wrote from Abuja.

 

 

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