Nigeria: NCS Boss Ja'afaru Ahmed Finally Bows Out After Two Tenure Extensions

20 January 2021

Ja'afaru Ahmed, 61, took the office in 2016 and was supposed to have retired from service in July 2019

After enjoying tenure extensions twice, the Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS), Ja'afaru Ahmed, is finally about to bow out of office on Thursday, PREMIUM TIMES has exclusively gathered.

Mr Ahmed, 61, took the office in 2016 and was supposed to retire from service in July 2019 but President Muhammadu Buhari asked him to stay on.

The Ministry of Interior, headed by Rauf Aregbesola, in 2019, said it recommended Mr Ahmed for the initial extension due to his "track record of innovative reforms in the Prisons Service and the need to consolidate and complete some of the on-going programmes, especially on human rights compliance, reformation and health care, agricultural and education programmes for the inmates."

Going by the extension, Mr Ahmed was supposed to have left the position in July 2020 but that did not happen as the extension was renewed by another year.

Rather, PREMIUM TIMES learnt that he and the heads of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Muhammed Babandede, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Abdullahi Muhammadu, had sought extension of service from their supervising Ministry of Interior.

Their request, which Mr Aregbesola conveyed to the Presidency, was approved by President Buhari.

PRNigeria, a new platform with links to the Nigerian security establishment, had earlier reported that the interior minister was planning to recommend a third tenure extension for the officers.

However, some retired and serving officers in the sector expressed concerns over the plan.

Because the officials have attained the retirement age and exceeded the maximum number of years of service, sources noted that a further extension of their tenures could cause bad blood amongst officers of the paramilitary agencies.

Therefore, the NSCDC boss, Mr Muhammadu, was allowed to bow out of office recently and was replaced by an acting commandant.

Handing over

An internal memo obtained by PREMIUM TIMES Monday indicated that the NCS boss is about to follow suit. The memo said a pulling out parade has been organised for Mr Ahmed, who would have to hand over to another official before appearing at the ceremony.

The memo was signed by the Deputy Comptroller-General of the service, John Mrabure.

The handing-over event is scheduled for Thursday at the organisation's headquarters in Abuja.

If no formal successor is announced by then, Mr Ahmed will hand over to the most senior officer, which is the DCG, Mr Mrabure, pending the appointment of the new CG.

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