A Federal High Court in Lagos on Wednesday fixed Oct. 21 to hear a suit against the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) over alleged mobilisation fee fraud.
The Citizens Advocacy Initiative For Accountable Leadership (CAIFAL) had filed a suit against the NYSC in June, challenging collection of mobilisation fee.
Joined as respondents in the suit are the Director-General of NYSC, Sidmach Technologies Ltd, the Minister of Youths and Sports and the Attorney-General of the Federation.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the counsel representing CAIFAL, Chief Dania Abdullahi, was present in court on Wednesday, while there was no representation for the respondents.
Abdullahi told the court presided over by Justice Jude Dagat that the processes had been served on respondents.
CAIFAL is seeking a declaration that by virtue of the provisions of the NYSC Act 1993, the first to third respondents, have no statutory rights to demand a pre-mobilisation fee from prospective corps members.
In an affidavit deposed to by Mike Ogie, the group averred that sometime in 2014, the NYSC introduced an electronic registration programme, where prospective corps members were required to register online with the sum of N3,000, a condition precedent for mobilisation.
He averred that the NYSC entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with a company — Sidmach Technologies — to collect the fees on behalf of the NYSC through the issuance of scratch cards to corps members.
According to him, under the memorandum, 70 percent of the monies collected will be ceded to the company (Sidmach), while the balance of 30 percent was reserved for the NYSC.
He said the company had since 2014 collected over N1.3 billion on behalf of the NYSC, without remitting part of the proceeds to the Scheme or the Federation Account.
The acts of the first to third respondents contradicted the true intention of the NYSC Act which makes it mandatory for prospective corps members to be compulsorily mobilised for service of their father land.
They are seeking a declaration that both the previous collection and continued collection of the monies from prospective corps members is illegal, wrongful and most improper.
They also want an order directing the first and second respondents to immediately render account of all monies so far realised from corps members since the inception of the collection in 2014.
The group also want an order of perpetual injunction, restraining the NYSC from further collecting any money from prospective corps members as a pre-mobilisation or re-deployment fee.
The court has fixed Oct. 21 for hearing.