Tue, Oct 03, 2023

Go home until further notice, Buhari tells SGF and DG NIA

Go home until further notice, Buhari tells SGF and DG NIA

The war on corruption has finally clipped the wings of two prominent personnel in the Muhammadu Buhari Administration as the President has ordered the immediate suspension of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal.

Also suspended with immediate effect is the Director General, National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ayo Oke.

The two would remain suspended pending the outcome of investigation into various allegations against them, a statement issued by Femi Adesina in Abuja on Wednesday said.

The statement said that the SGF would be investigated over alleged  violations of laws and due process in the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on the North-East (PINE).

The statement added that Oke was suspended to facilitate “full scale investigation” into the discovery of large amounts of foreign and local currencies by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Lagos, which the NIA has made claims to.

The investigation is also to enquire into the circumstances in which the NIA came into possession of the funds, how and by whose or which authority the funds were made available to the NIA, and to establish whether or not there has been a breach of the law or security procedure in obtaining custody and use of the funds.”

The large sum of money, which the NIA and Oke laid claimed to was discovered by the EFCC in a residential apartment at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos.

According to the statement, a three-member panel headed by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo would undertake the investigation.

Other members of the panel are the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, and the National Security Adviser.

The Committee is to submit its report to the President within 14 days.

The most senior Permanent Secretary in the SGF’s office, and the most senior officer in the NIA, are to act, respectively, during the period of investigation according to the statement.

Lawal was indicted by a Senate Committee probing the disbursement of funds meant for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps. The committee alleged that Lawal awarded a N200 million contract to a company linked toG him, to cut grass at an IDP camp.


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