As the Nigerian Senate and the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali’s impasse over the former summon on the CGC to appear before it in uniform to explain its pro­posed and now suspended ve­hicle duty payment on old cars, spokesman of the Senate, Sen. Sabi Abdullahi has advocated to move for a law that will en­sure that only career civil serv­ants head government agen­cies and para-statals.
Abdullahi said this in Abuja, while reacting to Ali’s refusal to wear the service’s uniform.
According to him, some of the appointees have little knowledge of the workings of organisations they head, and this leads to anti-people poli­cies, reduced productivity and other problems.
“I have a Bill I am working on; I am trying to bring my ex­perience of how little things have brought the public ser­vice to what it is now.
“There has been reform but it has not changed anything.
“It is a disservice for me to be eyeing a career peak and just when I think the op-por­tunity for me to get to that ca­reer peak is going to come, something happens.
“And, it is not just this one happening in the Customs, it happens in many para-statals; that is the fate they suffer un­fortunately.
“So, we have to begin to choose between what is a ca­reer peak and a political ap-pointment.
“Even within the career peak, for example, the Head of Civil Service; it is a politi-cal appointment but it is done among those who are in the career service,’’ he said.
On concerns by some ex­perts that allowing civil serv­ants to rise to the point of heading organisations could lead to corruption, Abdullahi said it was not a good reason to deny them the opportunity.
“The question there is that, is the system not having a way of sanctioning and dis-cipline? There is a way of sanctioning and discipline; every career does.
“In companies, the private sector, if you are doing the wrong thing there is a disci-pline for you and if it means taking you out of the system, they take you out of the sys­tem.
“My take is that it is a wrong thing that I serve as officer, maybe grade level 8, rose to grade level 16 or 17, without a query, and I have very good record of perfor-mance, with promotion and everything.
“Just at that last stage, you say that if you give it to me I am going to be corrupt.
“The person who is brought in, what will he protect in the system. But the career person has contributed to the sys­tem, has defended and pro­tected it, and has pro-moted the system.
“So, those who are in ser­vice have more to protect for the interest of the system than those who are brought in be­cause they have nothing to lose,’’ he was quoted as saying.