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Buhari Orders NHIS Boss To Proceed On Administrative Leave

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Prof. Usman Yusuf, the embattled Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), has been ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari to proceed on an administrative leave.

Mr Olusegun Adekunle, Permanent Secretary, General Services Office, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF), made the directive of the president public in a signed statement in Abuja.

Mr. Ben Omogo, Director, Administration Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF) was further directed by the president to take over the affairs of the scheme.

The leave according to Adekunle was meant to ensure that investigation by the Independent Fact-Finding Panel to be inaugurated on Friday is unhindered.

The panel, to be headed by Dr. Hassan Bukar, has Mrs Jummai Idakwo, OSGF as the Secretary.

Members are Dr. Emmanuel Meribole​​​, Director, Federal Ministry of Health, Mr. Adewale Owolo​​​​, Director, Audit, Office of the Auditor General of the Federation (OAGF), Mr. Shamsuddeen Bello, ​​​Deputy Director, Expenditure, OAGF.

Other members are Mr Ishaq Yahaya​​​​, Director, Certification & Compliance, Bureau of Public Procurement, and Dr Ekanem John Udoh, Director, Science, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology.

One of the terms of reference (TOR) of the panel are to investigate the alleged infractions listed by the NHIS Governing Council in its letter dated Oct. 18, 2018 and determine the extent of culpability or otherwise of the Executive Secretary with regards to the allegations.

It is mandated to make appropriate recommendations based on the findings from TOR I, identify, investigate and make recommendations with regards to issues that led to the unhealthy relationship between the board and the Chief Executive Officer.

The president directed that with the establishment of this panel which has two weeks to report its findings, the earlier body set up by the Governing Council stood dissolved.

He added that the government recognised the importance of the scheme as a strong mechanism for the delivery of public healthcare and reassured Nigerians of the determination of the government determination to place high premium on public interest.

​The president said that the Federal Government had found it necessary to restate that the objectives for he establishing Parastatals was in fulfillment of the need to deliver services to Nigerians faster and better.

He added that government had also considered it necessary to restate that the roles of Governing Boards and Councils were as prescribed by the statutes, guidelines and extant circulars.

He added that the position of chief executives of Parastatals was to ensure that policies of government as enunciated by boards and councils were implemented in accordance with their mandate.

“Government, has however, observed with deep concern, the growing tension between boards and chief executives and their attendant implications for governance.

“For the avoidance of doubt, government will neither tolerate acts of indiscipline from any appointee nor will it harbour any acts of corruption.

“Government will, however, ensure that due process is followed strictly in trying to maintain discipline and probity in public service,” the president said.


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Joshua Oyenigbehin is an introvert who is passionate about Storytelling, writing and teaching. He sees his imagination as an unsearchable world, more magical than a fairyland. He has written a novel and working on another.

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