The Minister of Interior, Abba Moro yesterday accepted blame for the poorly conducted immigration recruitment exercise that led to the death of 16 youths on March 15th. Mr Moro appeared before the Senate Committee on Interior Matters Panel instituted by the senate to investigate circumstances that led to the ill-fated exercise. While expressing his sympathy to those that died, Moro said as with most administrative exercises, the end result cannot be determined...Also at the panel yesterday, the Comptroller-General of the NIS, Mr. David Parradang told the committee members that he was sidelined by the Minister throughout the recruitment exercise and that he got wind of the exercise through a newspaper advertorial. He said only N45million was released to the NIS for provision of test materials as against the the N201million released to the consulting firm, Drexel Technical Nigeria Limited. He said this caused a lot of logistic problems on the day of the test.
"Mr chairman and distinguished senators, we are deeply grieved and saddened by the way events turned out. We express our sincere regrets once again. However, permit me to state that our patriotic desire was the pursuit of a more honest, a more transparent, a more cost effective, a more efficient and equitable platform. We sincerely made appropriate and adequate preparations for a hitch -free exercise, but as most things in administrative and human conditions, the yield curve of expected outcome is mostly undefined .My heart goes out to the families of those who have lost their dear loved ones. I sincerely sympathize with those injured. I share in their grief. I share in their pains." Continue..."May I, at this juncture, assure you, distinguished senators and Nigerians, of my respect for the sanctity of human life. The loss of these young Nigerians, who are needed as a critical human resource factor for nation building is most regrettable. As the Minister of Interior, under whose purview this unfortunate exercise took place, I cannot abdicate my responsibility. The buck stops here.”
Some of the Commanders of the NIS who headed the test in some other states said asides the serious logistic problems, influx of those who were not supposed to write the exam was also responsible for the stampede experienced on that day..