By Jeffrey Adaralegbe
Publisher, Boardroom News
The current leadership of the Public Complaints Commission (PCC), led by Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf, celebrates its two years in office as federal commissioners of the Commission.
The nation’s version of the International Ombudsman locally named Public Complaints Commission was established by the Murtarla-Obasanjo military regime on the 16th October, 1975, on the recommendation of then Udoji Panel of Enquiry.
The Commission has ‘’wider powers to inquire into complaints by the members of the public concerning the administrative action or inaction of any Public Authority and Companies or their Officials, and other matter Ancillary thereto’’.
The Chief Ombudsman of the Federation, Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf, with the support of the thirty-seven (37) Federal Commissioners representing all the thirty-six states (36) of the Federation, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) had, since on assumption of duty, practically hit the ground running.
In a release by the press unit of the Commission, it was reported that, under the watch of Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf-led leadership, the Commission vigorously embarked on strategic plans and actions engendered good governance, as it focused strictly, encouraging and trying her possible best to institutionalize fair, just and egalitarian society that promotes social justice at all levels of government in Nigeria.
Abimbola’s leadership in the Commission had recorded a number of achievements within the two years period under reference. Among such feats recorded under his leadership include; the establishment of Enforcement Unit, through a collaborative effort with the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) authorities, in order to effectively check some recalcitrant respondents.
According to the release, “The Enforcement Unit was created on the 11th April, 2022; and since then, about thirty-five (35) case files have been handled by the unit out of which twenty (20) have been successfully resolved through prosecution. The Unit has also prosecuted not less than twenty-five (25) recalcitrant respondents and the amount of 15.1 Million Naira has been recovered for various complainants”.
Also attributed to Hon. Ayo-Yusuf-led Commission was Infrastructural Development which saw to the substantial transformation of not only the Headquarters of the Commission but also the state offices across the Federation. “Our workforce are now discharging their official functions in an environment that is more conducive and with good ambiance which has logically enhanced high level of productivity”.
The Logistics Support is yet another feat said to be recorded by the Commission’s leadership. As the release further revealed, “In order to achieve optimal result, operational vehicles for the sole purpose of investigative duties has been duly procured and timely distributed to all PCC offices across the States, FCT and the Headquarters as well. These utilities vehicles have tremendously added values to the efficiency, prompt service delivery and day-to-day operations of the Commission’s functionaries. As a result of the above, the Commission was able to receive not less than 258,780 complaints from members of the public, aside cases initiated by the Commission to address systemic issues in MDAs and the private sector. Out of the above number, 170,000 complaints have been successfully resolved. The Hon. Chief Commissioner’s goal is to continue to put smiles on the faces of Nigerians and the Residents”.
Another important landmark of the Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf-led Commission is the establishment of the NIGERIAN OMBUDSMAN Radio, said to be in line with the mantra of his management team, “as it relates to aggressive publicity drive to increase the corporate visibility of PCC, “RADIO OMBUDSMAN’’ shall soon come on stream in the country’s air waves, for maximum reach to our various segments of the public”.
On human capital development/staff welfare,
his management team was said to have prioritized training and retraining of its personnel, “giving high premium reward system through its robust welfare package and other important incentives, in order to motivate its workforce for them to perform optimally in the overall interest of the Nigerians and the residents”.
His team had upgraded the he PCC Call Center/ICT facilities “for rapid response to enquiries and lodgment of complaints, the Commission’s call Center and ICT equipment have been maximally upgraded, in order to quickly serve prospective Complainants and Respondents alike”.
It is worthy of note to mention several systemic investigations carried out by the Commission under the leadership of Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuff, in all the six geo-political zones of the country. This exercise is in line with the proactive mechanism of the Commission, to address any form of maladministration or service failure in the polity. During the last two years, the Commission has successfully engaged the relevant authorities on issues bordering on infraction and poor service delivery. The Commission’s searchlight was focused on the following, among others, the administration of all the thirty-six states of the federation on the management of the ecological fund; some Airline operators on poor service delivery; Nigerian Commercial Banks on poor handling of crises associated with the redesigning of new naira notes; authority of the Nigerian Correctional Services on the welfare of the inmates; operators of the mobiles network on the unlawful deduction of the customers’ money for unsolicited services; and the authority of the National Health Insurance Scheme for poor service delivering”.
On the Commission’s Publicity Drives, “The Nigerian Ombudsman Institution increased tremendously under the leadership of Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuff. In order to integrate the Commission into mainstream of things and position it positively in the minds of the public, the Commission partnered with media organizations to adequately publicize the activities of the Commission, all the information Officers of all the states offices of the Commission, including FCT, were linked on public awareness and publicity drives of the Commission. Under the leadership of Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuff, the Commission adopted another breathtaking innovative, multidimensional and highly professional approach as related to its public awareness and enlightenment campaign techniques, when it organized a road show/public outing, a sporting
marathon race, and seminar events, which were all tagged “Anti-Corruption Campaigns”, in collaboration with other critical stakeholders and technical partners, so as to ultimately and effectively drive home the Commission’s sensitization efforts. The Hon. Chief Commissioner inaugurated PCC Football Team last year, with main objective of using the spot activities to fight corruption among the vulnerable Nigerian youths and the general public”.
“It is expedient to mention the production of the maiden edition of the Nigerian Ombudsman, the journal that x-rayed the activities of the Chief Commissioner and his team, since their inauguration in June 2021… embarked on creating and developing quality concept in the printing of other publicity tools and materials such as leaflets, flyers, t-shirts, face-caps, banners, back drops, as well as other important publications.
Apparently, the Chief Commissioner, Hon. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf, “recently approved the appointment of Hajia Mamman Jumai Salamatu as the new Secretary to the Commission. The Hon. Chief Commissioner is expected to preside over the plenary of all the Hon. Federal Commissioners of the Public Complaints Commission’s offices across all the thirty-six (36) states of the federation, including FCT, coming up between 13th and 14th September, 2023 at the Commission’s headquarters, Abuja”.