NIS Officers Set To Protest Extension Of Tenure For CG, Concerned Stakeholders Write Buhari

By Bukar Bolori

Some officers of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) are planning to come out and protest should President Muhammadu Buhari extend the tenure of the Comptroller General, Idris Isah after the ongoing one year extension he was given expires on April 24.

Isah has had his retirement extended from last year to April 24, 2023 but there is allegation that he has started lobbying for another one year extension, a situation which the aggrieved officers claimed would affect the morale and discipline in the Service.

In a letter signed by Akinwale Ayomipo Dennis on behalf of the officers who addressed themselves as Concerned Nigeria Immigration Stakeholders, the group told the President that they took the decision not for personal gains but rather to protect the integrity and sanctity of the Nigeria paramilitary structure particularly the Nigeria Immigration Service.

The letter read in part: “We are a group of patriotic Nigerians writing under the aegis of Concerned Nigeria Immigration Stakeholders who are worried about recent developments in the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS). Our worry is not about personal interest but about protecting the integrity and sanctity of the Nigeria paramilitary structure particularly the Nigeria Immigration Service and more importantly is the preservation of your legacy as a rare nationalist and principled retired military officer who understands and imbibe the fundamental concept of morale in military and paramilitary system.

“We are compelled to write this letter to you, being the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and father of all including all the officers (rank and file) of the Nigeria Immigration Service.

“Sir, permit us to draw your attention to the planned further extension of tenure of the current Acting Comptroller General of the NIS, Idris Isah Jere, who officially retired from the service on April 24,2022, after acting for seven months following the retirement of Mohammed Babandede in September 2021.

“But after his retirement in April last year, he was asked to continue as CG in acting capacity for another one year which will elapse on April 24 this year.

“To say the least, his tenure as acting CG has been uneventful and appeared to have set the service backwards in several ways which we do not want to divulge to the public.

“But the one that is already public knowledge is the delay and the stress Nigerians go through to acquire new international passports. We cannot begin to recount the damage that has been done to the image of the NIS in the last one year.

“But more importantly, and of more concern to us is the plan by the acting CG to seek another extension in clear contravention of service rule.”

They added that they are aware that the acting CG has been lobbying to ensure he gets another one year in office, claiming they have proof of the CG’s action as the latest was a letter he wrote to all directorates of the NIS dated April 12 titled “Official Assignment,” where he informed the directorates that he would be traveling for assignment to come back on April 25, which is a date beyond the one-year extension he was given, this they stated is an implication that the acting CG is already looking forward to another extension.

They told President Buhari that this “will be a disservice to Nigeria and a tragedy for the NIS if Idris Jere succeeds in getting another extension when there is a pool of more competent officers to occupy the CG position.”

“We are therefore appealing to Mr President not to entertain any argument to extend the tenure of the acting CG as this may irreparably damage officers’ morale with the consequent effect on service delivery,” the stakeholders said while not ruling out that concerned aggrieved personnel of the NIS may embark on an embarrassing protest against further tenure elongation for the acting CG which may negatively affect the image of the Service.

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