A Human Rights lawyer, D.D Makolo has challenged the powers of the Minister of interior, Rauf Aregbesola to extend the tenure of the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Mohammed Babandede.
Makolo said in a letter to Aregbesola that Babandede has spent a little over 35 years in service and should have retired by now.
He told the minister that he has no powers to extend the tenure of the Chief Executives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), the Fire Service, Nigeria Immigration Service and the Nigeria Prisons Services Board (CDFIPB) all of which are under Aregbesola’s ministry.
He said the practice of extending the tenure of any public officer is- “Counter productive, demoralising and detrimental to the career progression of officers in public service,” adding that it sets bad precedent.
The lawyer, himself a former Immigration Officer, reminded the minister that he has a duty to uphold the constitution “as the continuous stay of Babandede in office is an infraction of the country’s laws.”
“Honourable Minister sir, Mr. Muhammad Babandede’s tenure as a public servant, employed by the Federal Government of Nigeria in 1985 to work as an Immigration Officer, has come to an end and his further stay in that office is arbitrary, immoral, wrongful and unlawful.
“The practice of extending the statutory tenure of office of any public officer is counter productive, demoralizing and detrimental to the career progression of officers in public service, with dangerous consequences, the overall price, our fragile nation can’t afford to pay at the end of the day. Please ‘Let us use our tongue to count our teeth’.
“The practice of arbitrary, illegal elongation of statutory tenure of public office occupants sets dangerous precedent for bureaucracy and national security,” he wrote, among other things.