Recruitment Stampede: We Want Our Money Back, Applicants Tell Immigration
BEVERLY HILLS, CA, March 21, (THEWILL) - Applicants in the bungled recruitment exercise of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) have asked the agency to refund the N1,000 application fee collected from each of the applicants.
Four of the applicants, Charles Ugwuonye, Friday Danlami, Chinedu Onwuka and Samson Ojo, through their counsel, Emeka Ugwuonye, are acting for themselves and as representatives of those who participated in the bungled exercise have dragged NIS to court, in seeking among others a refund of their application fees.
They are also praying the court to declare that the conduct or the execution of the recruitment exercise was illegal, unwarranted and in violation of the their fundamental rights to life.
The plaintiffs who filed the suit at the registry of the court brought the application under Sections 33,34, and 44 of the 1999 Constitition (amended) and the equivalent articles of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Right.
Joined as respondents in the suit are the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, the Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, NIS and its Comptroller General, David Shikfu Parradang.
The applicants, among other want the court to declare the recruitment exercise illegal and restrain the NIS from spending the money realised from the recruitment exercise.
They also want the court to order the respondents to refund the recruitment money back to the applicants, pay the sum of N1m to each applicant and N50m to deceased applicants as general damages.
They are also praying that the conduct or the execution of the recruitment exercise is illegal, unwarranted and in violation of the applicants' fundamental rights to life, right to protection from inhuman and degrading treatment, right to dignity of the human person, right against discrimination on the basis of the circumstances of birth and right against unlawful taking of the property of a person; under Sections 33, 34, 42 and 44 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, (as amended), and the equivalent Articles of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.
They had earlier prayed for an order declaring that the Respondents, particularly the Minister of Interior and NIS Comptroller General owed the duty of honesty and candour to them regarding the true purpose and intention behind the exercise.
They also asked the court to declare that the respondents, particularly the Minister of Interior and the Controller General of NIS had a duty to superintend the recruitment exercise in a safe and healthy manner with due consideration to lives and wellbeing of those who applied for or participated in the exercise.
Furthermore, they want an order declaring that the Nigerian Immigration 2014 Recruitment Exercise was carried out in a manner that was motivated by greed and corrupt intentions and without any realistic plan to offer the applicants employments.
Also they want an order declaring that the respondents do not have the power to appropriate any funds raised by them from the recruitment exercise but must remit such funds to the Federation Account.
The applicants further want court to grant an order of interim injunction restraining the respondents from spending any of the funds raised from the recruitment exercise and an order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondents from spending any of the funds raised from the exercise.
They also want the the court to direct the respondents to refund each applicant the sum of N1,000 which they paid to participate in the exercise and also an order directing the respondents to pay general damages in the amount of N1 million to each living applicant for the violation of their rights.
The court is also asked to make an order directing the respondents to pay general damages in the amount of N50 million to each person who lost his or her life during the exercise.
In addition, the applicants want the court to make an order directing the respondents to issue a written apology to them.
The apology should be published in five Nigerian newspapers and on the main website of the NIS.
In a 45-paragraph affidavit deposed to by one Chris Ebosie, the applicants averred that in or around September of 2013, the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) placed an advertisement, titled 'Nigeria Immigration 2014 Recruitment Exercise', on its website: http://www.
ng and several Nigerian newspapers.
They further averred that the said advertisement did not describe in a clear manner specific qualifications for the vacancies available and it did not indicate the number of vacancies available, but it merely encouraged anybody with qualifications greater than secondary school education to apply online through a website it designated for that purpose.