No member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) is under compulsion to serve in the insurgency-troubled Northeast region of Nigeria, the Director General of the NYSC, Brigadier General Johnson Olawumi, said on Saturday.
Olawumi also said that the few corps members serving in the area opted to do so of their own free will and that they cut across people from all parts of the country.
“I salute those who choose to go there (Northeast) for their service. Corp members are not forced to go there, the few number we have now are those who opted to go there and they cut across the whole country”, he said.
The NYSC boss made the remark while fielding questions from reporters during the closing ceremony of the scheme’s maiden edition of a one week Preparatory Course for State Coordinators Course 1 (PCSC 1/15) for assistant directors, held at the Nigerian School of Military Engineering (NASME) barracks in Makurdi, Benue State.
Brig.-Gen. Olawumi expressed satisfaction that despite the risk taken by corps members to serve in insecure environments, no casualty has been recorded among them.
He added that the NYSC goes the extra mile to monitor and ensure corps members’ safety in the area.
Also speaking, the NYSC Coordinator in Benue State, Mrs. Esther Atamewan, said at least 5,000 corps members would be expected in the state as from tomorrow even as she urged the general public to adequately cooperate with them as they move from one part of the country to another.