October 24, 2017
Controversy surrounding the reinstatement of Abdulrasheed Maina into the country’s civil service is getting messier by the day as the Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, has denied reports that she approved the reinstatement of the wanted former chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms.
In her reply to a query issued her by the presidency over the reinstatement of Maina, Oyo-Ita on Monday dismissed reports that she approved the reinstatement and subsequent posting of Maina to the Ministry of Interior.
Oyo-Ita’s refutal was contained in a statement by her Assistant Director, Media Relations, Mohammed Manga.
The Head of Service maintained that Maina’s restatement and posting did not emanate from her office.
The Minister of Interior, retired Lt.-Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau who had earlier exonerated himself from complicity in the matter, said Maina was posted to his ministry by the Head of Service.
The Minister, on October 22, had confirmed the resumption of duty by Abdulrasheed Maina, as an Acting Director in his ministry.
The confirmation came in a statement issued by the Press Secretary to the minister, Mr Ehisienmen Osaigbovo.
Maina was appointed by former President Goodluck Jonathan as Chairman of the task force in 2010 to check the corruption in the country’s pension system.
In 2012, the Nigeria Police accused him of misappropriating N100 billion pension funds in connivance with others.
The Civil Service Commission reportedly dismissed him for “absconding from duty’’.
Maina was arraigned in absentia by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which declared him wanted in 2015.
Mr Wilson Uwujaren, the spokesman of the anti-graft agency in a statement on Saturday, said Maina remained on the commission’s wanted list.
A presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, on Monday confirmed that the report of the circumstances of Maina’s recall and posting to the Ministry of Interior had been submitted to the President’s Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari.
President Muhammadu Buhari, on Monday, in a memo to Oyo-Ita, directed the immediate disengagement from service of Maina.
The President equally demanded a full report of the circumstances of Maina’s recall and posting to the Ministry of Interior, saying the report must be submitted to the office of the Chief of Staff to the President, before the end of work today.
Adesina, in a television interview on Monday night, confirmed that Oyo-Ita had submitted the report to the office of the Chief of Staff as demanded by the President.