Forget About Betta Edu’s Reappointment – Tinubu Tells Party Leaders

by J.J Olawuyi

President Bola Tinubu has dismissed the possibility of reappointing Dr. Betta Edu as the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.

President Tinubu suspended Edu from her ministerial position on January 8 due to her alleged involvement in a financial scandal involving billions of Naira from the ministry.

Investigations revealed that Edu had authorized illegal payments amounting to hundreds of millions of Naira to various private companies and government employees, breaching established regulations.

Specifically, Edu approved an N585 million payment to a project accountant at the Humanitarian Affairs Ministry, deposited in a United Bank for Africa (UBA) account. Additionally, a company owned by the Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, reportedly received N438 million for an unverified contract.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is currently investigating the suspended minister, while the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) is probing Tunji-Ojo.

Despite this, some high-ranking members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have been pressuring the President to leniently treat Edu.

Sources revealed on Sunday that these party leaders are basing their appeals on Edu’s significant role as the National Woman Leader of the APC, where she played a crucial part in garnering support for Tinubu’s election campaign.

They reminded the President that her ministerial appointment was a recognition of her contributions to the APC’s presidential election victory.

A top party insider, who requested anonymity, shared that convincing President Tinubu to consider leniency for Edu was challenging, despite her significant role in the campaign.

The source disclosed that Edu tearfully pleaded during a meeting with the President, facilitated by party leaders, but Tinubu remained unmoved.

President Tinubu firmly told her and her advocates that reinstatement was out of the question, leaving everyone uncertain about the outcome of her ongoing EFCC investigation.

Another informant confirmed that Edu implicated one of the President’s senior aides as a facilitator in her activities. This aide is a longstanding political associate of the President.

This revelation of the aide’s involvement in Edu’s misappropriation of funds shocked Tinubu, particularly concerning its impact on the administration’s anti-corruption efforts.

A presidential source indicated that the President has subtly relieved the aide of his duties, assigning his responsibilities to two other officials in the Presidency.

Multiple sources also reported that the President had placed the influential aide under security surveillance before his recent private trip to France.

Initially, Tinubu considered dismissing the aide but hesitated, given it was just seven months into his administration.

“President Tinubu was shocked by his close associate’s participation in the significant financial scandal involving Betta Edu. It was a disappointment that a trusted individual in his anti-corruption campaign had so quickly joined corrupt practices.

As for the aide’s potential dismissal, that decision is solely the President’s prerogative,” said one of the sources.

Other top officials in the administration are also facing corruption accusations. The Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, is currently scrutinized for allegedly directing N9 billion to a Microfinance bank for an unclear project.

Similarly, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, faces allegations of accepting $170 million in bribes and releasing vessels seized for illegal oil bunkering.

Both the Works Minister and the Naval Chief have defended themselves through their respective departments, but the allegations continue to attract public attention.

You may also like

Are you sure want to unlock this post?
Unlock left : 0
Are you sure want to cancel subscription?
Update Required Flash plugin
Verified by MonsterInsights