Uche Usim, Abuja
In what is clearly a manifestation of the worrisome unemployment challenge in the country, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) said it received 828,333 online applications from prospective job seekers jostling for 3,200 advertised vacancies in the paramilitary agency.
The figure was released on Monday night after NCS shut its three-week recruitment portal to formally proceed to the next phase of the 2019 recruitment exercise. The portal unveiled on Wednesday, April 17, was preceded by a press conference on April 16.
Nigeria Customs Service spokesman, Joseph Attah, who made the disclosure to Daily Sun in Abuja, explained that out of 828,333 that applied online, 524,315 candidates successfully completed the process while 156,948 registered on the portal but failed to complete the process.
Attah explained further: “Out of the 524,315 candidates, 278,582 applied for employment in the Customs Superintendent cadre while 120,184 applied for positions in the Inspectorate cadre. Again 115,987 applied for the Customs Assistant cadre.
“In all, 828,333 visited the site, some registered but could not complete the application process. For those who started and completed the process of application properly and the system accepted them, we have a total number of 524,315.
“We have a total of 156,948 applications hanging. This means that they started the process but they could not finish until the time elapsed and the system shut down,” he explained.
The Customs spokesman further revealed the process of screening applicants was ongoing, adding that only shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview in line with the Service’s internal recruitment template.
“Now that the system has been shut down, what is going on is electronic screening because we have parameters already been keyed into the system.
“For instance, we discovered some people who studied History, Geography and Biochemistry applied for marine related jobs. So, the system will weed out all these applications using the parameters that have been fed in and then bring out those whose documentation are directly relevant to the position advertised.
“When that is done, it becomes the shortlist. All those on the shortlist will receive an email inviting them to go for examination and other screening that will follow,” he noted.
Attah however warned all prospective job seekers to watch out for phoney portals that may be unveiled by online fraudsters to defraud them. He advised them be to only accept communication from authentic Customs channels.
“We are aware that internet fraudsters will want to cash in on the moment and introduce all sorts of portals. The Customs portal has closed and therefore any invitation to visit any site especially on the social media is fake and the handiwork of fraudsters who want to extort money from desperate applicants,” he said.
The Acting Deputy Comptroller-General of Customs, Umar Sanusi, on April 16 announced at a press briefing held at the Customs headquarters that 2,200 persons will be recruited as general duty junior officers, while 800 will be for the ranks of Customs Assistant and Superintendent.