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Another curious observation also made by the Senator representing Osun East at the National Assembly, Senator Francis Fadahunsi, is the query he raised for the Nigerian Army and Comptroller General of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), Hameed Ali, on the use of serving officer, Brigadier General Buhari, as his Principal Staff Officer (PSO).
The query, according to him, is raised based on the fact that there are trained Customs officers on the position, who had been rendered useless only for who had no idea of the workings of Customs to handle the job.
The lawmaker descried the scenario as “anomaly that has been taken too far.”
In his submission, “General Buhari has been working with Ali as PSO for the past four and a half years. This is to the detriment of professional Customs officers. This same army general is alleged to have taken over the function of the posting committee, as he now handles exclusively the posting of Comptroller, Assistant Comptrollers and Deputy Comptrollers.
“It is disheartening that since Ali became the CG, professionals in the service have been rendered useless and have been dealt several emotional and psychological blows that have no doubt affected their productivity.”
While making it clear that he had no personal issue with Ali, he expressed concerns with the Service and how it could effectively carry out its revenue collection duties for the economic benefit of the country”.
The Deputy Chairman of the Senate Committee on Customs, Senator Francis Fadahunsi therefore called on President Muhammadu Buhari to rescue the service and also ask the Chief of Army staff why a General will be PSO to a retired Colonel who is on appointment with the Customs service.
He warned further, saying “Mr. President must disabuse the minds of Nigerians who now see the Customs as an annex of the Nigeria Army. The Senate committee Chairman is a retired Army Major, the Comptroller General is a retired Colonel and a serving General is the Principal Staff Officer.”
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