NYSC withholds allowances of corps member shot during service

A corps member, Dada Gbenga, who was shot in March at his place of primary assignment in Bayelsa State, has accused the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) of withholding his two months allowances.

PREMIUM TIMES reported how hoodlums on March 20 attacked a hostel where corps members serving at Victory International School, Swali Yenagoa in Bayelsa State lived.

Two corps member, Oluwatobiloba Popoola and George Onakpoma, were killed in the attack.

Four months after, the families of the victims said the NYSC and police had denied them the consolation of getting a clear picture of the incident.

The NYSC coordinator in the state, Loto B. O, did not respond to a PREMIUM TIMES’ request for his response to the accusations by the families.

Meanwhile, the only survivor of the attack, Mr Dada, was not paid his April and May monthly allowances while he was in hospital receiving treatment for gunshot injuries he sustained from the attack.

Narrating his ordeal to PREMIUM TIMES, he said he “felt betrayed by Nigeria.”

“After I left the hospital, I was redeployed to Kogi. While I was redeployed to Kogi State, my monthly allowances for April and May were not paid despite several efforts to get it.

“I was still in the hospital at Bayelsa when they did clearance for the payment of the two months. Till this moment, NYSC refused to pay me. All my request to get paid has been futile despite writing to them.”

When asked how he made his request, he said: “I wrote a hand-written letter together with my account details and statement of account for authenticity. It was acknowledged but no response.”

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“Firstly, we corp members depend on the allowance while discharging our duties. To get money for transportation to PPA, feeding and general welfare, I have depended on friends and family members who know my plight.”

The National Youth Service Corps Scheme is compulsory for Nigerians who graduate before the age of 30. It is an experience many graduates look forward to.

To get monthly payment, corps members are expected to get monthly letters from their place of primary assignment to confirm that they truly worked for the month. After receiving the letter, they take it to the NYSC Secretariat at their local government following which they are paid for the month.

However, Mr Dada could not do this because he was at the hospital.

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