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December 2, 2023

Alleged Violation of Public Service Rules, NSDC Act Sparks Controversy

A recent petition has brought to light alleged violations of Public Service Rules and the Sugar Regulation Council (Amendment) Act, 2015, by the former Executive Secretary of the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC), Mr. Zaccheus Adedeji, and former Director Finance and Administration, Mr. Auwal Abubakar Shira.

The petition, presented on behalf of Mr. Audu Karimu, a concerned Nigerian citizen, raises concerns about the actions of the NSDC’s former top officials.

The plea equally addressed to the appropriate authorities like [Secretary of the Government Federation; Attorney General of the Federation & Minister of Justice; Department of State Services (DSS); as well as Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB)], by extension highlights concerns about extended service years, simultaneous public appointments, and possible misconduct were all tabled.

Facts of the Petition revealed that, Mr. Zaccheus Adedeji was appointed as the Executive Secretary of the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC) in March 2021.

However, on June 15, 2023, he was appointed as the Senior Special Adviser to the President on Revenue.

This new role legally required him to resign from his position as ES of the Council. Furthermore, on September 15, 2023, he was appointed as the Acting Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

In a separate matter, Mr. Auwal Abubakar Shira, who held the position of Director of Finance and Administration (DFA) at the Council in 2021, was supposed to retire on September 11, 2021.

Allegedly, without proper authorization, the former ES extended the DFA’s service for one year, from September 11, 2021, to September 10, 2022. After this extension, the former ES once again, without legal authority, extended the retirement date to September 10, 2023.

However, as of September 11, 2023, the DFA has continued to remain in office without any further extension of his service years. This has raised concerns about his continued presence in the position.

Mr. Audu Karimu, the petitioner, has requested the following prayers to be granted;:

“That you consider and cause AUWAL ABUBAKAR SHIRA, to immediately vacate the position of Director Finance of NSDC, since his retirement date became effective on 11th September, 2021”

“That you consider and cause AUWAL ABUBAKAR SHIRA, to immediately return all the emoluments and allowances paid to him from 12th September2021till date since his retirement from service became effective from the earlier date”

“That you consider and cause AUWAL ABUBAKAR SHIRA, to immediately return all NSDC properties in his possession which he ought to have handed over or was not entitled to have in his possession from 12th September, 2021after his retirement date”

“That you consider and cause appropriate disciplinary actions against the Executive Secretary for violating the PSR and to discourage others from following suit” the petition revealed.

Meanwhile, the petitioner hopes these actions will not only rectify the alleged violations but also discourage similar actions by others in the public service.

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Mustapha Salisu

Mustapha Salisu is a graduate of BSc. Information and Media Studies from Bayero University Kano, with experience in Communication Skills as well as Public Relations.

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