Senate Committee Seeks Equitable Recruitment Distribution Across Geographical Zones

In a pivotal move to address regional disparities in federal employment, the Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-Governmental Affairs met with the National Assembly Service Commission (NASC) to scrutinize and amend the imbalances in recruitment among Nigeria’s six geopolitical zones.

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Senate Committee Seeks Equitable Recruitment Distribution Across Geographical Zones

Chaired by Senator Allwell Iheanacho, the committee’s session emphasized the necessity for balanced representation in adherence to federal character principles, underscoring the importance of equitable employment distribution as a cornerstone for national unity.

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The crux of the meeting was the startling revelation of disproportionate employment allocations evident in the commission’s nominal roll. The data presented stark inequalities: North Central at 90%, North West at 65%, North East at 64%, South East at 56%, South-South at 66%, and South West at 55%.

Following a closed-door meeting with NASC representatives, Senator Iheanacho addressed the press, expressing a firm commitment to rectifying these disparities. He asserted that the current distribution not only contradicts the committee’s principles but also violates the constitutional mandate for unity and equitable representation.

“We are committed to ensuring that all zones receive fair employment opportunities, as mandated by our constitution,” Iheanacho declared. “This imbalance must be addressed to maintain national unity and trust in our federal system.”

Iheanancho’s statements resonate with a broader call for transparency and fairness in federal appointments, highlighting the detrimental impact of regional favoritism on national cohesion. The senator’s commitment to addressing these issues is seen as a critical step toward restoring balance and fairness.

Engineer Ahmed Amshi, the chairman of NASC, provided historical context by noting that the commission’s last recruitment drive occurred in 2018. Amshi indicated that the commission was awaiting the Clerk to the National Assembly (CNA) to declare vacancies, thereby opening the door for new recruitment initiatives.

According to Amshi, the total staff strength stands at 3,721, with the following distribution across geopolitical zones: 1,024 in North Central, 564 in North West, 474 in North East, 592 in South East, 631 in South-South, and 436 in South West. He explained that the higher percentage for North Central was due to the catchment area advantage.

However, the committee expressed dissatisfaction with the current state of affairs, pointing out that Nigeria is comprised of 774 local government areas, and emphasizing the need for a more granular approach to ensure fair representation. “We want you to take us to the LGAs, we would like to have the list,” the committee members stated, indicating a demand for detailed data to ensure no region is disproportionately advantaged or disadvantaged.

The committee’s push for detailed local government data underscores a commitment to meticulously scrutinize recruitment practices and ensure compliance with federal character principles at all administrative levels. This initiative is viewed as a strategic move to foster national unity and trust in the federal system by ensuring all regions are equitably represented.

This development comes at a crucial time for Nigeria, a nation where regional disparities in federal appointments have long been a contentious issue, often fueling discontent and perceived marginalization among various groups. The Senate committee’s efforts are poised to set a precedent for transparency and fairness in federal recruitment processes.

The move by the Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-Governmental Affairs to ensure equitable recruitment distribution is seen as a significant step towards reinforcing national unity and trust in Nigeria’s federal system. By addressing these imbalances, the committee hopes to not only comply with constitutional mandates but also to strengthen the social fabric of the nation.

As the process unfolds, all eyes will be on the Senate Committee and the NASC to see how these reforms are implemented and whether they will indeed lead to a more balanced and representative federal workforce. The commitment to fairness and equity in employment practices is crucial for Nigeria’s progress towards a more inclusive and united nation

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