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Wearing of uniform: Jemibewon backs Hameed Ali, says “I’ll have resigned if…”

A former governor of defunct Western State, Maj.-Gen. David Jemibewon (rtd) has said the demand by the Senate that the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service, Hameed Ali, appears before it in service uniform was unnecessary.

Jemibewon described Ali, a retired colonel, as a fine military man who should not belittle himself with customs uniform.

The retired general, who once served as the minister of police affairs, said he would have resigned if anyone had compelled him to wear police uniform as a minister.

He said: “It would be belittling the position of the uniform of a member of the Armed forces.

“There was no way anybody could have compelled me to wear uniform. I would have resigned,” Mr. Jemibewon said. “Even if the law said so I would have resigned.”

However, Jemibewon’s position on the issue was a contrast to what occurred when a former customs chief was appointed outside the service in similar manner as Ali wore uniform.

Bello Haliru had said the moment he was appointed, he became a career customs officer.

“I knew I must comply with all rules and regulations of the organisation I am leading and that included wearing a uniform.”

Similarly, Haladu Hananiya, a former corps marshal of the Federal Road Safety Commission, wore uniform of the agency following his appointment by former president, Olusegun Obasanjo.

This was despite the fact that Hananiya retired from the Nigerian Army as a major-general, years before his appointment to the FRSC.

When reminded of the above cases, Jemibewon, praised the humility, of Bello Haliru and Haladu Hananiya but stood his ground, still.

Jemibewon also admitted that he doesn’t know what Customs rules and regulations stipulate, but repeated that an Army officer should be above a Customs’ uniform.

“The highest patriotic body in any country in the world is the Army…You don’t expect someone who has risen to that position in the Army to wear customs uniform.”

“Here is a man who has excelled in his military career and you’re asking that one to wear Customs uniform? I don’t see how that will ensure competence and efficiency,” he said.



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1 Comment

  1. Onyewuchi Nze 20th March 2017 at 11:06 am

    If col Ali is still serving in the army and is therefore on military posting, then he must not wear the Custom’s uniform. But then, in that case, he must wear the one of the army. But he is wearing neither. If the man is already retired as soldier, he is not qualified to wear the army’s. If he feels that he is above wearing Customs uniform he should not have accepted the job.

    What qualification or experience merited him to this apex job? Is he an expert in international trade, clearing and forwarding and other custom services? From this uniform matter and the way and manner he responded to issues, one can see that the man needs some brushing up. He is arrogant and proud. The bases of his arrogant is not understood. Has he any rare and special knowledge, competence, ability or experience?

    One of the reasons why not much is being achieved by this government is a result the people appointed to posts. Apparently, scant attention is paid to ability, and solid experience. The president believes that ministers and top political appoints are just there to make noise (publicity to my mind). There had been murmurs of tribalism, nepotism, and other bad isms in many appointments by this government.

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