The Management of Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, NSITF, has debunked the report that President Muhammadu Buhari approved the suspension of the Managing Director of the Fund, Adebayo Somefun, three Directors and eight other senior staff.
Recall that a statement signed by Charles Akpan, Deputy Director in the Ministry of Labour and Employment, on Thursday, had said that President Buhari approved the indefinite suspension of Somefun and other senior management staff of the Fund for alleged financial infractions.
The statement further said that the affected officials were to appear before an Investigative panel to give information on what they know about the purported financial infractions.
But the management of NSITF on Thursday night issued a statement saying that President Buhari did not suspend any management staff and accused the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige of overreaching himself.
The statement read, “The Management of NSITF read the press release published by some media outfits that the President has suspended the management of NSITF and announced same. “We wish to state that President Muhammadu Buhari has not suspended the management of NSITF and did not make such announcement. The person mentioned in the media report is not a staff of the President.
“For clarity, we need to mention that we received a letter from the Hon Minister of Labour and Employment Sen Chris Ngige stating that he is doing a procurement audit on NSITF and that Management is suspended.
“We note that the Minister’s action is against President Buhari’s directive through the Secretary to the Government of the Federation that stated clearly that no Minister should suspend or sack any head of agency appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“The memo stated that Ministers should follow procedures by going through the governing board of the agency that will now make recommendations to the SGF to act if there is need. We are sure that President Buhari will not be part of any illegality and lack of due process.
“Meanwhile, the management of NSITF is open to any form of investigation by the appropriate agency as there is nothing that the management will hide or is hiding. “We have been in receipt of several letters by the minister and several petitions written against NSITF by the Minister of Labour, Sen Chris Ngige and we will make all communications available to the public and relevant authorities. “The Management of NSITF is still discharging its duty as appointed by Mr President.”