By Emman Ovuakporie and Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA- REASONS why the Federal Government banned payment for recruitment forms were on Tuesday, revealed by Director for Legal Services and Prosecution, the Federal Character Commission, FCC, Oluwatosin Bodunde.
Bodunde said that government proscribed any kind of payment for forms for civil service jobs, following the March 2014 Nigerian Immigration Service ,NIS, recruitment tragedy.
She disclosed this at a one-day public hearing on two resolutions of the House of Representatives entitled: Extortion of Unemployment Seekers by Government Agencies- Recruitment Firms and Call for State of Emergency and Legislative Intervention on the Employment Crisis in Nigeria.
The public hearing was conducted by the Ezenwa Onyewuchi led House Committee on Labour, Employment and Productivity.
She explained that aside from the military and the police which were given waivers due to the peculiarity of their recruitment process, the FCC had ensured that it’s August 2014 circular banning the payment for forms or scratch cards by applicants was full enforced in Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
Also speaking at the hearing, representative of the Federal Civil Service ,FCC, Clement Assam said the commission had put in place institutional mechanisms to protect applicants from extortion.
He however admitted that only a fraction of unemployed graduates can be absolved into the civil service.
In his welcome address, Onyewuchi defined unemployment to be both a social and economic problem.
He noted that unemployment reduces the purchasing power of the citizens which in turn results to consequent issues including low consumption owing to lower rates of production, which ultimately hinders government’s the push for economic growth.
Earlier, Speaker Yakubu Dogara while declaring the hearing open described as highly unacceptable the fact that the unemployment rate is growing by at least 16 percent each year, with as many as 50 percent of the eligible youth said to be either unemployed or underemployed.
The Speaker who was represented by Deputy Minority Whip, Binta Bello, posited that poverty and unemployment are key contributors to the rise in crime and insurgency.
He stated that the House was committed to collaborating with the Executive, the organized private sector and other critical partners to ensure success in the renewed drive of the federal government to create jobs.