By Adeola Aderounmu
I remember that sometime in the late 1990s I filled and submitted the Federal Civil Service Commission (FCSC) form for employment in Nigeria. This is 2013 and no sane person in the Human Resources Department of the Federal Civil Service Commission of Nigeria has contacted me to inform me about the status of my application.
I would not be wrong to conclude that no one cares about my application since employment opportunities in Nigeria has been totally reduced to man-know-man and other unspeakable conditions. Unspeakable in the sense that nowadays you can be even employed in certain public and private institutions just like the same way people do “black jobs” in other climes. It is wickedness of the highest order if 30-70% of my income goes to a certain beneficiary because he/she helped me to secure a job.
On the homepage of the FCSC there are no available jobs and that would probably make your online application a ghost search. This is where the paper form becomes a gold search and your personal connection with top government officials a clear advantage.
This year (2013) you will need about N25 000 to collect the civil service application form for employment. This fee may not be an official requirement but since we are talking about Nigeria many idiotic things are deniable yet applicable. I can only imagine how many Nigerians have applied for employment into the Federal Ministries over the years.
In Nigeria unemployment is at a world record level. Around 90-100 million Nigerians are unemployed-that is ten times the total population of Sweden! More than 30 million of these people can be categorised as youth under 40 years of age. This is a large market for fraud (and other atrocities that have invaded Nigeria over the years) if you ask me. Just like in the cursed oil business in Nigeria, there is a likelihood of a cartel presiding over the direct embezzlement of the applications fees for the jobs that do not exist. Nigeria is a failed country I have no doubts.
One of the problems with Nigeria is that you don’t even know who is doing what. Nigeria has excessive administrative jargons which promote inefficiency and aid massive corruption and ineptitude. There is a man called Alhaji Bukar Goni Aji who is the head of the Civil Service of the Federation and there is a woman called Deaconess Joanna Ayo who is the chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission.
They can now start to look at my application and let me know where I stand regarding my application submitted several years ago. In fact the Director Generals in the various Federal Ministries in Nigeria who are given 4-5 allocations of the application forms need to bury their heads in shame too. Not a single job is advertised today on the FCSC homepage!
But wait. Who talks about shame or crooks in Nigeria? Nonsense! Almost every civil servant and private employee in Nigeria will do whatever it takes to earn substantially above his/her income because of the unrealistic and useless wages approved by the corrupt federal and state governments in Nigeria. I mean who can live on N18 000 monthly in Nigeria? Is there any family in Nigeria that can live on N50 000 monthly? The latter would be still almost impossible if all the children are deprived of any form of education. Those who earn bigger still try to live above their incomes.
The systemic nepotism and corruption that has overtaken virtually everything and anything Nigerian has become an almost incurable spiral network that span from Aso Rock in Abuja to Igbogila where my grandfather lived and died several years ago. If you are not corrupt in Nigeria you are an endangered species.
Aso Rock in Nigeria is where all the monies from the four corners of Nigeria are supposed to be gathered before being re-distributed to every Dick, Tom and Harry that govern one way or the other in Nigeria. This type of government that creates a million loop holes is the most useless form of governance that I have seen in my life.
It must take nonentities to start and sustain such a system of governance. Posterity will neither forget nor forgive those who destroyed the Nigerian Federation and substituted it for the destructive unitary system. It must also take a great deal of indifference and careless followership to allow the reign of a useless and worthless system. My anger knows no bound.
A systemic destruction of the moral and social system in Nigeria and a parallel replacement with the business of trust in God and Allah rather than the entrustment of societal and ancestral values in capable hands have derailed and submerged Nigeria/Nigerians in what looks like an everlasting doldrums.
I’m never going to be able to calculate the amount of money that has been stolen from innocent and desperate applicants in the name of Civil Service Employment opportunities. The affected departments in Abuja should stop this exploitation and looting.
Once upon a time in Nigeria merit took the forefront when people were given jobs and responsibilities. We know how times have changed very badly for Nigeria. Today in Nigeria any useless or insane person and even a criminal can occupy any position in public service as long as the person is connected. Gone are the days when things were done correctly in Nigeria.
Federal character destroyed partly the merit system in Nigeria. An inexplicable affinity for sudden wealth and insatiable greed aggravated the situation. Tribalism and nepotism completed the destruction. In Nigeria today public trust is zero. The governments are not working. People do what they like and live recklessly. Life is not appreciated in Nigeria. In extreme situation, the people and the government bend the constitution/law to perpetrate their evils, in broad day light!
How can you change for better a system where everybody is looking suspiciously at the next person and over their shoulders? How can you change a system where people believed that their neighbours can be responsible for their misfortunes and bad luck? How can you change people who in these entire dilemma run between mosques, churches and fetish shrines while perpetrating all sorts of evils in offices, environs and homes?
Personally my mind has continued to jump between hope and hopelessness for Nigeria. I feel hopeful for the great minds that are produced in Nigeria. I feel hopeless because in public and private enterprises everybody becomes a vulture ravaging what is left of the national cake in the name of self-preservation. Nigeria is not working.
Since it appears that only a handful of people are genuinely interested in saving Nigeria, I have for the moment aligned my mind along the possibilities of the changes that may come with self-determination, national conferences, referendum or outright political re-structuring that will bring back regional governments. I will continue to argue that there will not be a magic formula for Nigeria (if she is to recover say in the next 50-100 years) but not even getting started along that recovery road remains a lingering sad situation.