The Nigerian Custom Service was late yesterday thrown into a state of crisis, as five Deputy Comptroller-Generals jointly announced their resignation in a terse letter addressed to the Chairman of the Customs Board.
But, in a swift reaction to the allegations that the 5 DCGs resignation was a protest against the leadership style of the newly appointed Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Hameed Ali, the spokesperson of the Service, Wale Adeniyi, said the decision of the top officers to turn in their letters of voluntary retirement from the service was part of an “ongoing reorganisation of the service”.
In a statement signed by the spokesperson of the Service, he acknowledged the acceptance of the resignations, alongside 29 other senior officials who were also retired from service as part of re-organization of the service.
“As part of on-going re-organization in Nigeria Customs Service, 34 Senior Officers have been retired from Service with immediate effect,” Mr. Adeniyi said in the statement on Friday.
“The re-organization of the Service is one of the core mandates of the Comptroller-General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd).
“Those affected in the exercise are five Deputy Comptrollers-General of Customs (DCGs), who had earlier given notification to the Comptroller-General for voluntary disengagement. They are John Atte MFR, Ibrahim Mera OON, Musa Tahir mni, Austin Nwosu and Akinade Adewuyi.”
Three other officers of the rank of Assistant Comptroller-General were also affected.
They include the Secretary to the Nigeria Customs Board, Madu Mohammed; Zonal Coordinator Zone ‘A’, Victor Gbemudu, and Assistant Comptroller-General, (Headquarters), Bello Liman.
Twenty six other affected officers, whose names were not made available by Customs, were of the rank of Comptrollers serving in Customs Headquarters, Zonal Offices and various Area Commands as “part of measures to kick-start the re-positioning of the Service for improved performance”.