The National Association of Itsekiri Graduates (NAIG) has condemned the claim by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) that the recent recruitment of graduate trainees and promotion was based on unblemished academic competence, logical thinking, ability to engage meaningfully in problem-solving in addition to federal character.
NAIG in a statement signed by its president Edema Collins Oritsetimeyin said “It is ridiculous and laughable that the NNPC could claim that progress in the Management cadre, professional competence, accountability, and transparency as well as ensuring national spread in top management positions is critical factors that are not negotiable.
“The names of personnel at top management level clearly show not only dominance of a particular section of the country but also the dominance of a particular ethnic group as against Chapter 2 Section 14 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
‘’Chapter 2 Section 14 (3) of the Constitution clearly states as follows; the composition of the Government of the Federation or any of its agencies and the conduct of its affairs shall be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the federal character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity, and also to command national loyalty, thereby ensuring that there
shall be no predominance of persons from a few states or from a few ethnic or other sectional groups in that Government or in any of its agencies.
“The NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Dr. Kennie Obateru, to have stated that “the basic academic requirement for newly employed Graduate Trainees in the corporation is a minimum of a Second-Class Upper Division, or an Upper Credit for Higher National Diploma, HND, certificate holders. Alternatively, a candidate holding a Second Class Lower Division degree or an HND Lower Credit Diploma holder, must in addition have acquired a Master’s degree in a relevant field” when facts available to us clearly show the opposite.
‘’We wish to place it on record that over a thousand qualified Itsekiri graduates applied for openings in the recent NNPC recruitment especially the graduate Trainees category. Surprisingly, most of them were not shortlisted for the aptitude test and none employed despite holding not just a Second Class Upper or Upper Credit Degrees but also First Class and Master Degrees from reputable institutions around the world.
‘’The way and manner that the recent NNPC recruitment was carried have once again shown that the Corporation is being run by a cabal of the Federal Government who only allow those with “top government connections” to get employed.
‘’The management of the NNPC clearly breached the Nigerian Constitution by carrying out the recent recruitment to favour certain political interest and a particular ethnic group”.