Promotion racket has rocked the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) as some eligible candidates feel side-lined by some powerful hands, Daily Trust investigation has revealed.
Some aggrieved employees of the agency alleged that the way the promotion was being handled had created camps that would not augur well for the agency in the future.
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The FRSC recently released a list of promotable officers and marshals for the promotion exercise which is threatening its existence.
In a letter with reference No FRSC/HQ/CS/518/VOL.6/9, dated December 21, 2021, the Corps Secretary/Assistant Corps Marshal, Susan A. Ajenge, mni, said she was directed to release the list of the promotable officers and marshals for the 2021 exercise sequel to the approval given by the agency. The list, which contains the names of 33 officers, has two categories.
Category A consists of a list of officers to be promoted from the rank of Assistant Corps Marshal, which is equivalent to a police AIG to Deputy Corps Marshal, which is equivalent to a police DIG.
Daily Trust investigation revealed that there is no problem with the nine shortlisted candidates in category A of the promotion exercise as vacancies had been declared in the affected states.
It was gathered that the alleged fraud in the category B of the list of the promotion exercise is what has led to the consternation in some aggrieved quarters at the agency, as no vacancy was declared in any of the affected states from where the shortlisted candidates came from, even though category B is as much a political rank like category A.
Shortlisted candidates in category B of the exercise are to be promoted from the rank of Corps Commanders, equivalent to a police commissioner, to the rank of Assistant Corps Marshal, which is equivalent to a police AIG.
Our investigation revealed that Nasarawa, Yobe, Bayelsa, Sokoto and Rivers State are among states with no representation in the rank of Assistant Corps Marshal of the exercise even though they have qualified candidates for the post, but they were not invited for the elevation exercise in total disregard to the federal character principles.
A source familiar with the happenings at the FRSC confided in Daily Trust that the whole promotion exercise was designed to clip the wings of some FRSC staff who hailed from the affected states.
“This is a silent but brutal attempt at crushing the affected states. This has been going on for a long time as some high profile persons have an ulterior motive,” our source said.
Sources familiar with the promotion exercise confided that states with serving Corps Commanders or Assistant Corps Marshals have been invited for the exercise to the detriment of states that have eligible candidates ignored.
He said, for instance, two officers from Imo State have been shortlisted for promotion from Corps Commanders to Assistant Corps Marshals, even though the state has two existing Assistant Corps Marshals and there is no vacancy declared for Imo State.
Also, Oyo and Edo states have three serving Assistant Corps Marshals each and an officer from each of the states has been invited for elevation to Assistant Corps Marshal.
At present, Enugu State has two Assistant Corps Marshals, yet one corps commander has been invited for elevation to the rank of Assistant Corps Marshal; while one Corps Commandant has been invited for the exercise, even though Kogi State has two Assistant Corps Marshals.
Two officers from Ebonyi State from the rank of Corps Commanders have been invited for promotion to Assistant Corps Marshals, even though the state has two Assistant Corps Marshals and no vacancy was declared for Ebonyi State.
‘Room for petition a booby trap’
In a letter announcing the promotion, FRSC Secretary, Ajenge said, “Any officer or marshal who is eligible but not shortlisted should write with cogent reasons through his commanding officer to the corps marshal’s attention, DCM AHR or CS as the case may be for consideration.”
Speaking to Daily Trust, one of our sources said that the said “Ample opportunity given by the FRSC leadership for a petition “is a booby trap.”
He added that any disgruntled officer who dared to raise a finger will be dealt with and possibly smoked out of the agency.
He said, “It is not true. Why must an eligible officer write a petition before he is included in a promotion exercise he deserves? You must have smelt a rat.
“Why do they want some states to have about six ACMs while qualified officers from other states are not invited for the interview?”
Another source in the agency told Daily Trust that there will be enormous implications if the promotion exercise is allowed to hold the way it is designed, as the alleged promotion internal fraud may lead to a crisis in the agency.
List of promotable officers not for public consumption – FRSC
Responding to the alleged promotion fraud rocking the agency, Ajenge said it was an empty allegation as the promotion exercise was not meant for public consumption. She said, “This is just an allegation as the list of the promotable officers and marshals is not meant for public consumption. Therefore, no rank was left out.
“This promotion is an internal affair of the FRSC and any person not happy with it should approach the corps marshal. I am not in a position to comment on this.”
Corps Marshal overstays
Daily Trust findings revealed that the Corps Marshal of the agency, Dr Boboye Olayemi Oyeyemi, is a career public servant who, by civil service rules, ought to have retired after 35 years of service or upon attaining the age of 60 years. He had put up 35 years in service as of last year.
According to the FRSC official website, Dr Boboye Olayemi Oyeyemi was born on November 26, 1960. Therefore, he attained the mandatory retirement age of 60 on November 26, 2020, and ought to have retired then by the provisions of the federal civil service rules.
Though Boboye could not be reached to comment on his “overstay” in office, a source told our reporter that the FRSC chief executive was appointed by the president.
“There is nothing strange in this because it was the president that appointed him and it is only the president who would ask him to go.
“His case is like that of the former service chiefs. Even though their tenures had ended long ago, the president asked them to remain office until about a year ago when he asked them to go,” the source said.