Connect with us

Politics

How Nigeria’s Finance Minister was forced to resign over forged certificate

Published

on

Nigeria’s Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun, on Friday resigned her appointment from President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration. The journey into resignation started on Wednesday, with an order for her to resign.

Impeccable sources told PREMIUM TIMES the minister was barred from the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting and told to submit her resignation to the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari.

The verbal instruction, which was relayed to her by Mr Kyari on behalf of the president, rattled Mrs Adeosun who went home downcast from the villa.

“She has been downcast and at home since she was given the order,” a source close to her told PREMIUM TIMES on Thursday.

The option of resignation was handed the minister as a way of giving her an opportunity to salvage whatever remained of her integrity.

A leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, also reportedly advised President Buhari to ask the minister to resign.

That was, however, not done before the president left for London on vacation in July.

At least two officials who met with Mr Buhari around the time confided in PREMIUM TIMES that the president assured them that he was consulting before taking action.

“He said he spoke to about seven persons, including the Ogun State governor who brought her, to seek advise on the way out,” a chief executive of one federal agency told PREMIUM TIMES at the time.

After the communication of the presidential decision to her on Wednesday, Mrs Adeosun knew the game was up. But she soon activated an intense lobby to reverse the order hours after overcoming the initial shock.

Governors sympathetic to her cause made spirited attempts to change her fate on Wednesday, but met brick walls.

Seeing that her fate was sealed, Mrs Adeosun reluctantly called a meeting of senior finance ministry officials on Thursday.

A senior ministry official who requested that his name should not be revealed, as he was not authorised to speak on the issue, said the minister turned in her resignation letter late Friday.

At the brief meeting Thursday afternoon, Mrs Adeosun directed her staff to commence the process of tidying the books and preparing her hand-over note.
The meeting was attended by the permanent secretary and the ministry’s departmental heads.

Two senior finance ministry officials said there was directive to all the departments to immediately begin work on the hand over notes.

The official said the directive to officials to delay the formal announcement of Mrs Adeosun’s departure from the Executive Council of the Federation was given by the presidency to allow the minister sufficient time to complete her hand-over note.

After spending the entire day in her office working to clean up her table and pack her personal belongings, the minister handed over to the ministry’s permanent secretary, Mahmoud Dutse, Friday evening.

But in its statement late Friday, the presidency directed the minister of state for budget and planning, Zainab Ahmed, to oversee the finance ministry.

Mrs Adeosun graduated from the Polytechnic of East London in 1989, at the age of 22, having been born in March 1967.

Having graduated at 22, the Nigerian law made it obligatory for Mrs Adeosun to submit herself for mobilisation to participate in the one-year mandatory national service, for her to qualify for any job in Nigeria.

Following the report, the NYSC in its initial reaction disowned the purported exemption certificate the minister claimed she had.

Read also: Mauritania polls: Opposition alleges ‘serious signs of possible fraud’

Days later, the NYSC asked for time to investigate and carry out verification of the minister’s certificate.

The result of that verification was never made public but PREMIUM TIMES learnt it played a key role in Mrs Adeosun’s exit.

In resigning her appointment, the disgraced Minister, in her letter to Buhari, wrote as follows:

“Dear Excellency,

Let me commence by thanking you profusely for the honour and privilege of serving under your inspirational leadership. It has been a truly rewarding experience to learn from you and to observe at close quarters your integrity and sense of duty.

“I have, today, become privy to the findings of the investigation into the allegation made in an online medium that the Certificate of Exemption from National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) that I had presented was not genuine. This has come as a shock to me and I believe that in line with this administration’s focus on integrity, I must do the honourable thing and resign.

“Your Excellency, kindly permit me to outline some of the background to this matter. I was born and raised in the United Kingdom, indeed my parental family home remains in London. My visits to Nigeria up until the age of thirty-four (34) were holidays, with visas obtained in my UK passport. I obtained my first Nigerian passport at the age of thirty-four (34) and when I relocated there was debate as to whether NYSC Law applied to me. Upon enquiry as to my status relating to NYSC, I was informed that due to my residency history and having exceeded the age of thirty (30), I was exempted from the requirement to serve. Until recent events, that remained my understanding.

“On the basis of that advice and with the guidance and assistance of those, I thought were trusted associates, NYSC were approached for documentary proof of status. I then received the certificate in question. Having never worked in NYSC, visited the premises, been privy to nor familiar with their operations, I had no reason to suspect that the certificate was anything but genuine. Indeed, I presented that certificate at the 2011 Ogun State House of Assembly and in 2015 for Directorate of State Services (DSS) Clearance as well as to the National Assembly for screening. Be that as it may, as someone totally committed to a culture of probity and accountability I have decided to resign with effect from Friday, 14th September, 2018.

“Your Excellency, It has been an exceptional privilege to have served our nation under your leadership and to have played a role in steering our economy at a very challenging time. I am proud that Nigeria has brought discipline into its finances, has identified and is pursuing a path to long term sustainable growth that will unlock the potential in this great economy. Under your leadership, Nigeria was able to exit recession and has now started to lay the foundations for lasting growth and wealth creation. Repositioning this huge economy is not a short term task and there are no short cuts, indeed there are tough decisions still to be made but I have no doubt that your focus on infrastructural investment, revenue mobilisation and value for money in public expenditure will deliver growth, wealth and opportunity for all Nigerians.

“I thank His Excellency, the Vice President and my colleagues in the Federal Executive Council for the huge pleasure and honour of working with them. I also thank most specially, the team in the ‘Finance Family’ of advisers and heads of agencies under the Ministry of Finance. Your Excellency, this group of committed Nigerians represent a range of backgrounds, ethnicities and ages. They have worked well above and beyond the call of duty to support me in the tasks assigned. The diversity in my team and their ability to work cohesively to deliver reforms, convinces me that Nigeria has the human capital required to succeed.

“Your Excellency, let me conclude by commending your patience and support, during the long search for the truth in this matter. I thank you again for giving me the honour of serving under your leadership, it is a rare privilege, which I do not take for granted. As a Nigerian and committed progressive, I appreciate you for your dogged commitment to improving this nation.

Please be assured, as always, of my highest regards and best wishes.”

Kemi Adeosun (Mrs)

Politics

Court summons Tunisian opposition leader, Rached Ghannouchi, over money laundering

Published

on

Tunisian opposition party, Ennahda has revealed that its leader, Rached Ghannouchi has been summoned by a judge over money laundering allegations.

The party revealed news of his summon on Wednesday and accused the authorities of targeting him for political reasons.

The summon is said to answer questions about the allegations, which Ennahda say are untrue and a result of “distortion and fabrication”.

Recall that a court in Tunisia in May, slammed a travel ban on Ghannouchi, alongside 33 other party faithful under the suspicion of involvement in an alleged parallel security service put into place after the 2011 Tunisian revolution.

Ghannouchi has been one of the loudest critics of president Kais Saied since the president seized broad powers last year, moved to rule by decree and ousted the elected parliament in which the Ennahda leader is speaker.

President Saied sacked the government, suspended parliament, and seized a string of powers in July 2021. In December of the same year, he announced in a speech on national television a three-month “popular consultation” with the Tunisian people after which “draft constitutional and other reforms will be put forward to a referendum on July 25”.

Ghannouchi’s summon is not the first time the Judiciary since Saied came to power will take decision that is perceive by many to be targeted at the president’s rival.

In June, a Tunisian military court sentenced a prominent political opponent and rival of President Kais Saied, Seifeddine Makhlouf, to one year in prison and also banned him from practising law for five years.

President Saied’s seat-tight disposition has continued with controversial reforms despite criticisms and wild protests.

Continue Reading

Politics

Exiled former Burkina Faso’s president, Blaise Compaore, to return home

Published

on

Burkinabe authorities has revealed that former president of Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaore will return from exile for the first time since being ousted in a 2014 uprising.

The junta led by Colonel Damiba made the revelation on Wednesday. Compaore will return home despite his conviction earlier this year for complicity in his predecessor’s murder.

Blaise Compaore was sentenced to life imprisonment by a military tribunal in April for the murder of his predecessor and ‘best friend’, Thomas Sankara, in a 1987 coup.

The statement from the presidency said the meeting of former heads of state “does not hinder judicial prosecutions engaged against some of them”, but did not elaborate.

An association of lawyers representing the families of Sankara and others killed during the 1987 coup demanded that Compaore be arrested once in Burkina Faso.

Local media have speculated in recent days that Compaore could be granted a pardon over the Sankara murder as part of the junta’s reconciliation process.

The coup that brought the current junta into power in Burkina Faso was launched on 23 January 2022 when gunfire erupted in front of the presidential residence in the Burkinabé capital Ouagadougou and several military barracks around the city.

The military Junta of Lieutenant-Colonel Damiba ceased power afterward and Christian Kabore has been on house arrest since then. Although fighting insurgency was one of the reasons for the last coup, Burkina Faso however remains in the eye of the storm with continuous terrorist attacks.

Continue Reading

EDITOR’S PICK

Politics4 hours ago

Court summons Tunisian opposition leader, Rached Ghannouchi, over money laundering

Tunisian opposition party, Ennahda has revealed that its leader, Rached Ghannouchi has been summoned by a judge over money laundering...

Politics8 hours ago

Exiled former Burkina Faso’s president, Blaise Compaore, to return home

Burkinabe authorities has revealed that former president of Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaore will return from exile for the first time...

Metro18 hours ago

Malian migrants, including children, die as makeshift Europe-bound boat capsizes in Libya

Twenty-two Malian migrants including three children, have been killed when their makeshift Europe-bound boat capsized in the Mediterranean Sea off...

Metro20 hours ago

Monkeypox: WHO records over 6,000 cases in 58 countries in recent outbreak

According to the World Health Organization, more than 6,000 cases of monkeypox have now been reported from 58 countries in...

Politics21 hours ago

Rwanda, Congo DR settle for peace as Kagame, Tshisekedi agree to de-escalate tension

It appears the sun is setting on the diplomatic tension between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda president of...

VenturesNow22 hours ago

COVID-19: Friendship renewed as Algeria opens land border with Tunisia

Algerian President, Abdelmadjid Tebboune has announced that it will reopen the land border between the two countries in mid-July. The...

VenturesNow23 hours ago

The Gambia benefits from World Bank’s $68m grant to revive tourism industry

The Gambia and the World Bank have sealed a $68m grant deal which will go to support the West African...

VenturesNow23 hours ago

Ghana wants $1.5 billion from IMF to solve economic riddle. Will they get it?

Following Ghana’s decision to run back to the International Monetary Fund amidst its economic woes, the West African country has...

Metro23 hours ago

Nigerian-born OPEC Secretary-General, Mohammed Barkindo, dies hours after presidential reception three weeks to departure

The Nigerian-born Secretary-General of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Mohammed Barkindo, has died a few hours after he...

Sports24 hours ago

Three foreign-born players switch allegiance to Ghana: Can the trio help the Black Stars go far in Qatar?

Three foreign-born footballers, Tariq Lamptey of Brighton & Hove Albion, Southampton’s Mohammed Salisu as well as Inaki Williams of Athletic...

Trending