FORMER aviation minister Senator Stella Oduah has hit back at reports that she did not complete her mandatory one tear of national service by giving the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) directorate 48 hours to retract its statement about her.
Earlier this week, the NYSC had claimed that Senator Oduah, now the lawmaker representing Anambra North Senatorial District, abandoned her national service after the first month of orientation. it had been alleged that Senator Oduah reported to the Lagos orientation camp but then absconded and was not issued a certificate of discharge.
In the letter addressed to the NYSC director-general, Senator Oduah’s spokesman Ezennia Chukwudebe, said: “Our attention has been called to your scandalous letter in which you acknowledged that Senator Stella Oduah was mobilised for youth service in 1982 and served in the Lagos orientation camp but then concluded that she absconded and was not issued a certificate of discharge. That reckless statement which we consider grossly irresponsible no doubt suggests that it was procured from you for political considerations in favour of Senator Oduah’s political detractors.
“We are shocked that you condescended so low to make such false and unverified conclusions which is damaging to her character and image. For the avoidance of doubt, Senator Oduah’s NYSC place of primary assignment was the popular Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (Neca), and they issued a letter dated 11th January 2017 confirming that she carried out her NYSC primary assignment with them.
“Ordinarily, one needs not be bothered about any other similar allegations in the light of the aforesaid judgment and the fact that NYSC is not a constitutional qualification to hold any public office in Nigeria but your statement has to a large extent defamed her. It is curious how a person who had participated in all NYSC activities at the orientation camp can be said to have absconded because she left for her place of primary assignment as it was routine.
“It is either you chose to ignore your record or your office has failed to keep proper records. You are by this letter given 48 hours to retract your statement failing which legal actions shall be commenced against you.”