The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has described as shocking, scandalous and a mockery of justice Tuesday’s recall by President Muhammadu Buhari of the suspended Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NIHS), Prof. Usman Yusuf while he was still being quizzed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for alleged N919 million fraud.
The party also mocked the All Progressives Congress (APC)-controlled Federal Government for the cover up of the cabinet minister reported to have bought a property worth N280 million in Abuja from alleged corrupt enrichment.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, in statement on Wednesday said the Presidency stinks of corruption and has lost all claim of fighting graft, as long as it continues to protect indicted officials of the APC administration.
The party said it was disgusting that the same Presidency brandishing a medal of ‘African Union Anti-Corruption Champion’ would short-circuit the processes, arm-twist anti-graft agencies and pull out an indicted government official, while he was still guest at the EFCC where he was being grilled for his alleged maleficence.
This is a government official probed and thoroughly indicted for abuse of office and fraud to the tune of N919 million by a committee set up by the Minister of Health, comprising of senior officials of the Health ministry, Department of State Services, and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) and which report was submitted to the President last September.
The report detailed Yusuf as a public servant who “portrayed a holier than thou attitude but at the background, milked the agency dry” by ganging up with other fraudulent elements to fleece the NHIS to the tune of over N919 million through fraudulent procurements, while name-dropping on the President.
Instead of allowing for the conclusion of investigation and eventual prosecution by EFCC, the Presidency halted the process and rewarded the indicted official with a recall from suspension, even without any recourse to the supervising minister simply because Prof. Yusuf is not only of the APC but also known to be very close to the President.
The only way the Presidency can redeem itself from this particular scandal is to immediately return Prof. Yusuf to the EFCC and allow the law to take it course if it is actually fighting corruption in Nigeria.
In the same vein, we challenge the Presidency to immediately name the minister indicted for corrupt enrichment and bring him out for investigation and prosecution in line with the law, the party further said.
The PDP therefore invited Nigerians and the international community to continue to note the insincerity and deception of the APC government especially as the nation approaches the 2019 general elections.