The Department of State Service (DSS) seems to be in trouble already as some policy reversals which operatives consider as “witch-hunt” are being implemented just four days after a new Director General took over.
The DG Lawal Daura has, for instance suspended promotions done this year in the Service which were approved by former President Goodluck Jonathan.
Sources in the administration said that the former Spokesman of DSS, Marylyn Ogar who got an approval to proceed on three years study leave during the tenure of the former DG, Ita Ekpeyong has been asked to return to the country immediately.
A source who clarified the process of promotion in the Service however said on Saturday that “promotions in the DSS are recommended by the Service, forwarded to the National Security Adviser, who ratifies and then forwards to the President for approval.
The source said: “All these steps were followed. These promotions were duly approved by immediate ex- President Goodluck Jonathan before they were effected. It is difficult to prove any lapses or irregularities in that process because the incumbent DG, Daura, was also a beneficiary of a similar exercise when ex-DG, Ekpenyong Ita promoted him to the post of a Director at the twilight of his career shortly before he retired from Service.”
President Buhari in a circular approved the reversal of all promotions in the DSS approved by the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan from March 31.
A memo released to operatives of the secret police and signed by Toma Minti on behalf of the DG indicated that President Muhammadu Buhari had spotted “observed lapses” in the promotions released from March 31 and has accordingly directed a suspension.
The personnel affected include those promoted, converted and upgraded within the period under review. They are, therefore, to revert to their former ranks with immediate effect.”
It was gathered that panic has already gripped operatives of the Service, following allegations of a possible witch hunt as it was said that some departments, including the Public Relations and the Institute for Security Studies were being already penciled for certain actions.
The memo directed all affected personnel to revert to the old ranks while a committee was constituted to review all cases.
“If President Buhari had actually ordered the suspension, then he must have been grossly misled. Come around and sample the opinions of my colleagues and you would be amazed at such low morale that pervades the Service since the release of the circular”, another operative said.