The Executive Chairman of the Federal Character Commission (FCC), Muheeba Dankaka has been accused by some of the agency’s commissioners of highhandedness and job racketeering.
The allegation was made when the commissioners appeared before the house of representatives ad hoc committee investigating ministries, departments, agencies (MDAs), parastatals, and tertiary institutions on personal recruitment, employment racketeering, and the mismanagement of the integrated payroll and personnel information system (IPPIS), on Wednesday July 26.
Some of the commissioners who accused Dankaka of violating the FCC enabling act, include Nwokocha Onyekachi, the commissioner representing Rivers. He told the committee that the commission is “dysfunctional”.
When Yusuf Gagdi, chairperson of the committee asked Onyekachi to be mindful of his comment, he maintained that the majority of the commissioners are excluded from the commission’s day-to-day operations. He alleged that Dankaka runs the commission like a “sole administrator” and makes decisions independently without compliance with the provisions of the FCC act which require resolutions to be passed in a plenary involving all the commissioners.
Onyekachi also claimed that all efforts to make Dankaka “do the right thing” have yielded no result.
Abdulrazak Adeoye, federal commissioner from Osun also accused Dankaka of selling job opportunities to individuals and unlawfully halting a legally conducted recruitment when she took over.
He noted that he and other commissioners campaigning against the alleged illegality in the FCC are known as an “integrity group” and won’t rest till the right thing is done.
“She surreptitiously removed the names of Nigerians from the payroll of FCC and replaced them without the knowledge of most commissioners.
“We regard ourselves as an integrity group. We are Nigerians who stand clearly against the illegality of the things that will not help the country as a whole.
“We wrote a petition in our capacity as commissioners to DSS requesting for a covert investigation into this mess that we are not happy with, but the probe has been footdragging.
“There have been several investigations, several allegations against her, and she prevents most of these allegations from being looked into. She is above the law.”
The aggrieved commissioners also presented documents to the committees to support their claims.
Responding to the allegation, Dankaka claimed that her stance against corruption was the reason the commissioners are dragging her out. The FCC Chairperson who insisted that the allegations against her are false, told the committee that she was rich before her appointment.
“I now believe the adage that says when you fight corruption, corruption would fight back. I did not come to this place (FCC) to make money but to serve my father’s land.
“I swear with Almighty God, apart from the oath, I can take an oath with the Quran. Before I came here, I had made my name. I had made my money.
“Before I got to this place (FCC) they were selling slots. The place was like a marketplace. You can find out from people that live in Abuja if I am lying.“
Commenting on the ongoing investigation, Yusuf Gagdi said the committee won’t be compromised. He also said that any official in government agencies, including the anti-corruption bodies found “wanting of employment racketeering” will be made to face the wrath of the law.
The FCC chairperson was directed to give a written reply to the accusations by the commissioners against her, and it is expected that she would provide the committee with various documents, including the nominal roll and employment waivers, to the committee on Friday, July 28.