FCC Knocks Federal Polytechnic Oko Over Lopsided Appointment

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L-R: The executive chairman, Federal Character Commission, Dr. Muheeba Dankaka, FCC secretary, Mohammed Bello and the rector, Federal Polytechnic Oko, Anambra State, Dr. Francisca Nwafulugo, in a strategic meeting at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja.

The Federal Character Commission (FCC) has knocked the administrators of the Federal Polytechnic Oko, Anambra State over the lopsided appointment of principal officers in the school without recourse to the Federal Character Principle.

Speaking during an interactive session with the school management led by the polytechnic’s rector, Dr. Francisca Nwafulugo at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja, the FCC executive chairman, Dr. Muheeba Dankaka urged the institution to review the lopsided appointment made by the school board to reflect Federal Character Index and not marginalise other states.

The interaction followed an investigation carried out by the commission which revealed that, in the appointment of principal officers in the school, Anambra State natives were over-represented.

Dankaka, therefore, urged the polytechnic’s council chairman, Mallam Kale Kawu to oversee the review of the appointment of principal officers and the substantive registrar made by the council was heavily skewed in favour of Anambra State natives over other states of the federation.

She, therefore, challenged the board to cancel the appointment immediately and follow due process to give room for fairness, equity and justice. She insisted that appointments in any federal institution could not be the exclusive right of the host community.

“Opportunity must be given to other states.

“For a nation that claims secularity as a principle, this development is not only worrisome but a pointer to a feeling of marginalisation and its consequences.”

Dankaka posited that the Anambra people ought to realise that the polytechnic is a federal institution [and] not the exclusive right of Anambra State; therefore, the principle of Federal character should be respected and adhered to in any of their recruitments.

“The Federal Character principle as enshrined in Section 14 (3) of the 1999 Constitution states that ‘The composition of the government of the federation or any of its agencies and the conducts of its affairs shall be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity, and also to command national loyalty, thereby, ensuring no predominance of persons from a few states or from a few ethnic or other sectoral groups in that government or any of its agencies’,” she stressed.

Earlier in his presentation, the commissioner representing Oyo State, Prof. Joseph Olowofela, highlighted the need for fairness, equity and justice in process of recruitment of the substantive registrar.

“Apart from the fact that the man appointed is from Anambra State, records show that most of the principal officers of the polytechnic are also indigenes of Anambra State. This means the state is already over-represented in the polytechnic.

Nwafulugo appealed to the commission to allow the school authority to review the appointment rather than ruling on an outright cancellation of the exercise, considering the cost and effort put into the exercise.

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