Sunday, 19 November 2017
Tuesday, 07 November 2017 00:09

26 Nigerian women found dead at sea

Italian prosecutors are investigating the deaths of 26 Nigerian women – most of them teenagers – whose bodies were recovered at sea.

There are suspicions that they may have been sexually abused and murdered as they attempted to cross the Mediterranean.

Five migrants are being questioned in the southern port of Salerno.

A Spanish warship, Cantabria, docked there, carrying 375 migrants and the dead women, following several rescues.

Twenty-three of the dead women had been on a rubber boat with 64 other people.

Italian media report that the women’s bodies are being kept in a refrigerated section of the warship. Most of them were aged 14-18.

Most of the 375 survivors brought to Salerno were sub-Saharan Africans, from Nigeria, Senegal, Ghana, The Gambia and Sudan, the daily La Repubblica reports.

Among them were 90 women – eight of them pregnant – and 52 children.

There were also some Libyan men and women on board.

People-smuggling gangs charge each migrant about $6,000 (£4,578) to get to Italy, $4,000 of which is for the trans-Saharan journey to Libya, according to the Italian aid group L’Abbraccio.

Many migrants have reported violence, including torture and sexual abuse, by the gangs.

In the year to 1 November, 150,982 migrants arrived in southern Europe by boat from North Africa, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) reports.

Of them, 111,552 (nearly 75%) came via the Central Mediterranean route to Italy. The number who died on that route was 2,639, the IOM says.

The others arrived in Greece, Cyprus or Spain. The total is less than half the 335,158 who arrived in the same period of 2016.

Last year the total for Greece was higher than that for Italy.

Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and the Diaspora Mrs Abike Dabiri said “it is tragic, unfortunate and heartbreaking”.

She said: “We need to step up sensitization and awareness on the dangers of such method of migration.

“The boats being used are now smaller and more dangerous and the people on the other end are not so eager to safe them anymore.

“Don’t forget also, that they pay as much as $4,000 to go on such trips.

“Even if they survive, they only end up as slaves wherever they end up.

“The President Muhammadu Buhari Administration has been working with IOM to bring back volutary returnees.

“About 5,000 were brought back in the last six months, full of regrets and tales of woe that they wished they were never deceived into such trips.

“I condoles with the families of the victims and appeal to our your to stop being victims. It is not worth it, either in the short or long term.”

Monday, 06 November 2017 23:31

Former Kogi gov, Idris Wada in EFCC custody

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday traced N500m to the immediate past Governor of Kogi State, Idris Wada.

The money was said to be part of the N23bn allegedly disbursed by a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, through the then Director of Finance of the Goodluck Jonathan Campaign Organisation, Senator Nenadi Usman.

It was learnt that Wada arrived the EFCC office around 12pm and was still in custody around 9pm.

Monday, 06 November 2017 19:39

Mugabe sacks vice president Mnangagwa

President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe on Monday fired Emmerson Mnangagwa as vice president, Information Minister Simon Moyo said.

Mnangagwa, a 75-year-old former intelligence chief, has been heavily-criticised by supporters of Mugabe’s wife, Grace, who has also been touted as a potential successor to her husband.

Moyo said Mnangagwa had exhibited traits of disloyalty, disrespect and deceitfulness.

Mnangagwa was appointed vice-president in 2014, taking over from Joice Muguru, who was axed after Grace launched a campaign accusing her of plotting to topple the president.

NAN reports that on Oct. 6, Mugabe’s wife accused Mnangagwa of a dark past of clandestine plots, including planning to stage a coup around the time of Zimbabwe’s independence in 1980.

“In 1980 this person called Mnangagwa wanted to stage a coup. He wanted to wrestle power from the president.

“He was conspiring with whites. That man is a ravisher,” said Grace.

Inspite of his advanced age and concerns over his health, Mugabe has refused to name a successor.

He has been endorsed as his party’s candidate for next year’s election.

NAN

*We’re providing conducive environment for business

•Getting out of recession ‘not a fluke’

President Muhammadu Buhari is not adopting a quick fix approach to the economy, but initiating long-lasting policies, the Federal government has said.

Minister of Information and Culture Alhaji Lai Mohammed told reporters in Lagos at the weekend that the results of the economic policies of the government would soon begin to germinate in full measure.

The minister said: “This administration’s contract with Nigerians sits on a tripod— The fight against corruption, tackling insecurity and reviving the economy— even our worst critics acknowledge the progress we have made in fighting corruption and tackling insecurity.

“But one area in which they have consistently criticised us is the economy. Right from the inception of this Administration, we chose the path of seeking a lasting solution to the economic crisis plaguing the nation instead of engaging in a quick fix that may attract accolades but will not endure.

“We chose to be painstaking instead of engaging in palliatives.”

The minister added that the “well-thought-out policy, encapsulated in the Administration’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) is working and the results are beginning to show. In September we exited recession and returned to the path of growth, after five consecutive quarters of contraction. Taking Nigeria out of recession did not happen by accident. It was the culmination of months of hard work by the Administration and fidelity to its well-articulated economic policies.

“To show that taking Nigeria out of recession was not a fluke, less than two months after, the country has moved up 24 places, to 145th, in the World Bank’s ‘Doing Business’ report. Not only that, for the first time the country is recognised as one of the top 10 most-improved economies in the world.”

Secretary of Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) Dr. Jumoke Oduwole said the Federal Government would build on the achievements recorded, especially the enhancement of a conducive environment for business operations.

She said the conducive atmosphere include guaranteed access to credit for Small Scale Businesses (SMEs), construction permits, ease of business registration, ease of tax payment, and promotion of transparency and efficiency in the business environment.

She said The PEBEC chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo took a significant step towards making it easier for micro, small and medium enterprises to business by approving a 60-day National Action Plan on the ease of doing business for ministries, departments and agencies responsible for their implementation.

The minister said the measure was taken because micro, small and medium scale businesses account for half of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (DGP), adding that they also employ over 80 per cent of the labour force.

Mohammed added: “We look up to these enterprises to provide endless possibilities for economic growth. If the MSMEs blossom, Nigeria’s economy will thrive. We even surpassed our target. We had hoped to move up to 20 places. We beat that by four more to move up to 24 places.”

To boost taxation, the minister said the administration launched the “Nigerian Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) to provide time-bound opportunity for tax payers to regularize their tax status and pay tax regularly.

He said if tax payers honestly declare previously undisclosed assets and income, they will benefit from forgiveness of overdue interest and penalties, and be insulated from criminal prosecution for tax offences.

Mohammed added: “As of 31st Oct. 2017, VAIDS has raked in over N200 million and 55 million US dollars. For eight consecutive months, headline inflation has been falling; the foreign exchange reserves are up to $34 billion, from $24 billion a year ago; oil production is at nearly 2 million barrels per day, a significant improvement from 2016 when it was mostly below a million; the value of the Naira in the parallel market has appreciated significantly in recent times against the US dollar, and that at about 1.8 billion dollars, the capital inflows in the second quarter of 2017 were almost double the $908 million in the first quarter.”

The minister said Nigerians will savour a new lease of life, owing to the on-going massive infrastructural development, especially roads, railways and power, adding that food prices tumble and more jobs will be created.

Hailing Nigerians for their patience and belief in the Buhari administration, Mohammed said: “Reviving the economy was never going to be an easy task. It was bound to bring some hardship to our people in the short term. Through it all, the good people of Nigeria have borne the pains with equanimity, based on their unshakable trust in the sincerity, capability and commitment of President Buhari. Now, the soothing balm is here.”

Oduwole reviewed the performance of the economy, based on the World Bank’s reforms in the critical areas of starting a business, dealing with construction permits, registering property, getting credit and paying taxes, stressing that Nigeria was on course.

She said: “In the area of company registration, the Corporate Affairs Commission has moved to offer online registration and introduced new features such as electronic stamping of registration documents. Thus, entrepreneurs have been able to register their businesses much faster, within 24-48 hours, thereby saving cost and time

“Getting construction permits and registering property in both Lagos and Kano States have become more transparent and easier for businesses with the online publication of all relevant regulations, fee schedules and pre-application requirements online.

 

Lagos lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) has advised President Muhammadu Buhari to take action against officials involved in the controversial recall of former Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms Abdulrasheed Maina.

In a statement issued yesterday titled: “President Buhari should act with dispatch on Mainagate”, the rights activist said “time is certainly not on the side of President Buhari”.

Although the Federal Government has promised not to sweep the Mainagate under the carpet, Falana contended that the handling of the scandal generated by Maina’s recall has eroded the credibility of the anti-corruption crusade of the Buhari administration.

He said: “Therefore, the sanctions, which the Federal Government will mete out to all the officials who conspired to expose the administration and the nation to such avoidable shame will make or mar the fight against corruption and impunity, which is the cornerstone of the domestic and foreign policy thrust of the administration.”

Falana’s advice was sequel to a statement credited to Maina’s family, accusing Buhari administration of official betrayal.

He noted that at a news conference in Kaduna two weeks ago, the spokesman for the Abdulrasheed Maina’s family, Mr. Aliyu Maina, had stated that “Abdulrasheed was in fact invited by this administration and he was promised security to come and clean up the mess and generate more revenue to the government by blocking leakages. He has been working with the DSS for quite some time and he was given necessary security. So, one wonders why all the agencies and various individuals responsible for his return are now denying”.

But Falana contended that those who recalled Maina, “deliberately set out to subvert the anti-corruption policy of the Buhari administration”.

He argued that through such demonstration of impunity, the officials involved have exposed the country to ridicule before the comity of nations.

“In view of the revelation of the family, which has not been denied, it is crystal clear that the highly placed officials of the Federal Government, who brought Mr. Abdulrasheed Maina back to the country, gave him a clean bill of health, provided him with “necessary security”, reinstated him, promoted him and paid his arrears of salaries and allowances totalling N22 million deliberately set out to subvert the anti-corruption policy of the Buhari administration,” the senior lawyer said.

Falana described the payment of N22 million to Maina as “the height of insensitivity to pay arrears of salaries to a fugitive at a time when hundreds of thousands of workers and pensioners are owed arrears of their legitimate emoluments”.

The senior advocate queried: “Having found Maina and exonerated him, why was Interpol not informed that he was no longer wanted to stand trial for his role in the unprecedented pension fraud?

“Since Mr. Maina’s ‘necessary security’ provided by the State Security Service has not been withdrawn, why is the Federal Government requesting the Interpol to declare him wanted again? Will Interpol believe that a man, who was provided with ‘necessary security’ cannot be found by the Federal Government? Why is the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission asking Nigerians to assist in searching for the fugitive?”

 

Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata condemned Jose Mourinho to another damaging defeat against his former club as the champions clinched a crucial 1-0 win over Manchester United on Sunday.

Morata rewarded an enterprising display from Antonio Conte’s side when the Spain striker headed home early in the second half at Stamford Bridge.

After losing twice at Chelsea in his first season as United boss, Mourinho, who won three English titles in two spells with the Blues, is growing accustomed to leaving west London empty-handed.

This was an especially painful setback for Mourinho as a second defeat in their last three Premier League games leaves second-placed United lagging eight points behind leaders Manchester City.

United haven’t won at Chelsea since October 2012, a barren run that now stretches to eight matches.

While Mourinho licks his wounds, Chelsea manager Conte can take heart from a vibrant performance that keeps his fourth-placed team nine points behind City.

Amid talk Conte was in danger of losing the support of his players over his intense training regime, Chelsea’s third successive league win was well timed for the Italian in the week when demanding Blues owner Roman Abramovich made one of his ominous visits to the training ground.

Having reportedly torn into his players during a lengthy inquest into Tuesday’s 3-0 defeat at Roma, Conte wielded the axe as David Luiz and Antonio Rudiger were dropped.

Just as significantly, France midfielder N’Golo Kante returned to provide his steadying influence after missing six games with a hamstring injury.

In need of a fast start to set the tone, Chelsea thought they’d taken the lead when Marcos Alonso’s cross was turned into his own net by United defender Phil Jones, only for referee Anthony Taylor to disallow the goal for a push by Morata.

United should have been ahead themselves moments later when Ashley Young’s cross exposed early fault lines in Conte’s revamped defence, but the unmarked Marcus Rashford headed over from close range.

Tiemoue Bakayoko was equally profligate at the other end, the Chelsea midfielder firing wide from Davide Zappacosta’s cross.

Without a goal in his last six appearances, United striker Romelu Lukaku was searching for the blistering form that followed his pre-season move from Everton.

But the Belgian was largely anonymous and even when he turned on the edge of the Chelsea area for a low shot, Thibaut Courtois was able to push it away.

Rough treatment
Eden Hazard led the Chelsea response with a stinging 25-yard strike, forcing David De Gea into an agile stop.

Mourinho has been criticised for adopting a cautious gameplan in big matches recently and, while he seemed more willing to let United go forward this time, he must have been furious with the way Chelsea were slicing open his defence.

Andreas Christensen should have punished more slack United marking when he headed over from a Fabregas corner, before Conte finished the half raging at the officials after Antonio Valencia barged over Hazard.

Hazard came in for more rough treatment after the interval, with Jones and Ander Herrara both booked for fouling the Chelsea playmaker.

Hazard could have exacted immediate revenge when he found himself with just De Gea to beat from close range, but the Belgian’s hurried shot was easy for the United keeper.

Hazard didn’t need to rue that miss as Chelsea’s pressure was rewarded in the 55th minute.

United had only themselves to blame as Cesar Azpilicueta was allowed to advance unchecked down the right before whipping his cross towards Morata.

Left untouched by the flat-footed Chris Smalling and Eric Bailly, Morata had time and space to bury his header past De Gea for his first goal in seven games.

Mourinho sent on Anthony Martial and Marouane Fellaini, yet there was little threat from United until Fellaini squandered their last chance, shooting straight at Courtois in the closing minutes.

Sunday, 05 November 2017 14:41

Dele Alli limps out of England squad

Tottenham Hotspur’s in-form midfielder Dele Alli has had to pull out of the England squad for the upcoming friendlies against Germany and Brazil.

Alli’s two goals fired Spurs to a famous 3-1 Champions League success over titleholders Real Madrid at Wembley last Wednesday.

But the 21-year-old was ruled out of his club’s Premier League encounter against Crystal Palace on Sunday with a hamstring injury, and the English Football Association confirmed the setback would also keep him out of this month’s World Cup warm-ups

The FA announced on Twitter: “Squad update: the #ThreeLions will be without @dele_official for this month’s games. Get well soon, Dele!”.

Alli’s absence means manager Gareth Southgate now has 24 players for the Wembley double-header.

Tammy Abraham, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Joe Gomez have been called up by England for the first time, but Daniel Sturridge, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Chris Smalling are among those to have missed out.

England host Germany next Friday and Brazil four days later.

The Federal High Court in Lagos yesterday held that an application by former Minister of Petroleum Resources Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke seeking to be tried in Nigeria was “bizarre” and “misconceived”.
 
Justice Rilwan Aikawa dismissed the application for lacking in merit.
 
He agreed with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) it was a bid by the former Minister to escape justice in the United Kingdom. 
 
Mrs Alison-Madueke asked for an opportunity to defend allegations against her in a charge filed against a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) Mr Dele Belgore and a former Minister of National Planning Prof Abubakar Suleiman.
 
The prosecution said in the charge that Mrs Alison-Madueke (who is at large) allegedly shared $115,010,000 (about N35billion) to different individuals in 36 states ahead of the 2015 general elections, and that Belgore and Suleiman allegedly got N450milion from her.
 
Ruling on the application, Justice Aikawa referred to EFCC’s counter affidavit where it was stated that while in the United Kingdom, Mrs Alison-Madueke was invited by the Metropolitan Police who are investigating her for several financial crimes.
 
EFCC said she had been released on bail in the UK, but cannot leave the country, as investigations had reached an advanced stage and her trial imminent.
 
The commission said the application to list her as a defendant and facilitate her return to Nigeria was designed to scuttle both her investigation and imminent prosecution in the UK and the ongoing trial of Belgore and Suleiman.
 
According to the prosecution, Mrs Alison-Madueke’s application was a bid is to escape justice in the UK under the guise that she was coming to face trial in Nigeria.
 
Justice Aikawa held: “This averment, as far as my record shows, has not been controverted by the applicant. They are by law deemed admitted by the applicant, in which case I have no option than to believe them.
 
“By this unchallenged averment, the action of the applicant is simply a ploy to avoid justice in the UK. This court, unfortunately, cannot be used promote just that.
 
“The discretion to prosecute or not to prosecute the applicant is entirely that of the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation. This court has no power to interfere with that discretion. It will, therefore, not attempt to do so.
 
“On the whole, therefore, I find this application to be lacking in merit and is accordingly dismissed.”
 
Mrs Alison-Madueke’s lawyer Dr Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN) had argued that Section 216 (1) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) provides that a court may permit an alteration or addition to a charge or the framing of a new charge before judgment is pronounced.
 
He submitted that the section does not expressly state that the power to amend a charge was exclusively that of the prosecution.
 
But, Justice Aikawa held: “I disagree with him. It cannot by any stretch of the imagination be envisaged that a person other than the prosecution may amend a charge under this provision. The power to amend lies, in my opinion, exclusively with the prosecution and not any other person.”
 
Ikpeazu had also argued that Mrs Alison-Madueke was a “necessary party” to the case and therefore ought to be joined.
 
To that, the judge said: “Again, I disagree. As far as I understand, in every criminal trial, the necessary parties are the complainant and the named defendants.
 
“These are the persons the court will pronounce verdicts on at the conclusion of trial. The inclusion of the name of the applicant in counts one to four does not in my view make her a named defendant.
 
“Counts one to four in relation to the applicant remain mere statements and no more. It has not graduated to the status of a charge.”
 
Justice Aikawa also dismissed the SAN’s contention that the former minister would be denied her right to fair hearing guaranteed by Section 36 of the Constitution if trial proceeds in her absence.
 
The judge held: “In my view, this is a case of crying wolf where there is none.”
 
According to the judge, if anyone was to validly raise the issue of fair hearing, it was Belgore and Usman, not Alison-Madueke who is not part of the trial.
 
Besides, the judge said the application was belated.
 
He held: “Assuming all is in order, this cannot be the right time to make such an application when witnesses have been called and a number of exhibits have been tendered.
 
“The prosecution has even given a hint to the court that it’ll soon close its case. To roll the case back will definitely be tormenting for both the prosecution and the defence, and it will run contrary to the new spirit of speedy dispensation of criminal matters in particular.
 
“Therefore, I have no option than to agree that the application is misconceived from the onset. I’ll refrain from calling it an abuse of court process. But I’ll not hesitate to call it a misuse of court process..
 
“I say this because my curiosity has been aroused. Why did the applicant wait all this while before she came up with this bizarre application?”
 
After dismissing the application, Justice Aikawa, in another ruling, admitted in evidence an electronic e-mail in which Mrs Alison-Madueke gave instructions on how the money was to be shared. The email contained a list of persons to be given the money.
 
Afterwards, prosecuting counsel Rotimi Oyedepo continued with the examination of the second prosecution witness, EFCC’s Senior Detective Superintendent, Usman Zakari.
 
The witness said Belgore and Suleiman’s names were in the list and that they received N450million, which they also signed for.
 
He said there was no connection between the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the fund that the defendants collected.
 
“I did not recover any cheque issued by the PDP to the first and second defendants,” Zakari said.
 
The witness said Belgore made a cash payment of N50million to one Sherif Shagaya without going through a financial institution.
 
“The first defendant made several cash payments to various individuals without going through a financial institution,” he said.
 
For instance, he said N61 million was paid to a representative from Kwara North; N102 million to some from Kwara Central, and N87 million to someone from Kwara South.
 
EFCC had also tendered a document entitled Payment for Security and Transportation (Exhibit 7).
 
Among security agencies in Kwara who allegedly got part of the money include: the Military, N50million, Civil Defence, N20million, Director of State Security Services and his men, N2.5million, Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), N10million, INEC Administrative Secretary, N5million, Resident Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG), N1million, among others.
 
Total amount disbursed to security agencies amounted to N126.5million. Justice Aikawa adjourned till November 13 and 14 for continuation of trial.

Liberia's Supreme Court has ordered preparations for Tuesday's presidential run-off to be halted amid allegations of fraud in the first round.

Ex-football star George Weah and Vice-President Joseph Boakai are due to go head-to-head in the 7 November vote.

But the Liberty Party's Charles Brumskine, who came third in the first round, has challenged the result.

Last month's election was the country's first independently run vote following the end of civil war in 2003.

Following the announcement, riot police were deployed to guard the court and electoral commission.

Later, a delegation arrived in the capital, among them the heads of the regional grouping Ecowas, and the Africa Union. They are meeting the heads of all the political parties.

Who does the president support?

Mr Brumskine and the Liberty Party said the first round was "characterised by massive systematic irregularities and fraud", including polling stations opening late and therefore preventing people from voting.

The election is to be postponed until his accusations are properly investigated, the court says.

But even if his case is thrown out, observers say it is likely to delay next week's vote as the commission will have lost valuable preparation time.

The Liberty Party is not alone in its allegations. The accusation of irregularities is backed by two other political parties - including Mr Boakai's Unity Party, which on Sunday alleged that its own president had interfered in the process.

In a statement, it said Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa's first female elected president and a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, had attempted to influence the outcome of the poll.

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf at a speech in New York in 2015Image copyrightAFP/GETTY
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is accused of not supporting her deputy's presidential bid

Relations between Mrs Sirleaf and her deputy are not warm, with some ruling party officials saying the vice-president was not her choice to succeed her, the BBC's Jonathan Paye-Layleh reports from the capital Monrovia.

Mrs Sirleaf, 79, has however said more than twice that she supports Mr Boakai, who won 28.8% of the vote compared to Mr Weah's 38.4% in the first round.

Mr Weah's Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) responded to the accusations by noting it was "sad for a ruling party that has been in power for 12 years [to] be crying".

International observers, including the European Union, had not raised major concerns about the first round of voting, although some irregularities were observed, AFP news agency reports.

The court has instructed the Liberty Party and the electoral commission to present their cases by Thursday.

However, election commission spokesman Henry Flomo told the BBC it had not yet been officially informed of the Supreme Court's order, made late on Tuesday.

But if there is an injunction, the commission will abide by it as the Supreme Court is the highest court and its decisions are final, Mr Flomo added.

 
The Head of Service of the Federation, Winifred Oyo-Ita, showed her anger on Wednesday when she reacted in a very unusual manner at the Council Chambers apparently over her leaked memo to President Muhammadu Buhari.

This happened before the commencement of the weekly Federal Executive Council ( FEC ) meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Her angry reaction was witnessed by all those who were in the Council Chambers for the swearing-in of the new Secretary to the Government or the Federation, Boss Mustapha, and the launch of the 2018 armed forces emblem.

 Many Council members were also in the hall for the Federal Executive Council meeting.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Chief of Staff to the President Abba Kyari were seen questioning Oyo-Ita, shortly before the commencement of the event which started at 10:55am.

Oyo-Ita, who has never lost her cool in the public, was seen angrily gesticulating while trying to make her point in what was obviously a heated argument with Kyari.

The Head of Service went back to her seat and then rose again and headed straight to Osinbajo, who also engaged her in a tête-a-tete over the issue.

The National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, later joined the conversation after which the new Secretary to the Government of the Federation was seen calming the Head of Service.

She was later asked to return to her seat by the Deputy Chief of Staff Femi Ipaye, when it was now obvious all eyes were fixed on them.

The drama, which lasted about 10 minutes, was witnessed by Senate President Bukola Saraki, House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara, Chief of justice of the federation, Walter Onnoghen, the Governor of Adamawa, Jibrila Bindu, All Progressives Congress National Chairman John Odigie-Oyegun, chief of defence staff, service chiefs, Inspector General of Police and other heads of paramilitary service among others.

A national daily had quoted Oyo-Ita, in the leaked memo, as saying that Buhari was aware of the reinstatement of the former chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, Abdulrasheed Maina.

Oyo-Ita was also quoted to have stated that she had warned the president against the controversial recall of the embattled former pension boss.

President Buhari had ordered last week the immediate disengagement of former chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, Abdullahi Abdulrasheed Maina.

Maina was in 2013 recommended for dismissal by the Federal Civil Service Commission following a recommendation by the Office of the Head of Service.

In 2012, Maina was accused of leading a massive pension fraud scheme amounting to more than N100 billion.

He was drafted by the Goodluck Jonathan administration in 2010 to sanitize a corrupt pension system.

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