The Head of Service of the Federation (HoS), Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, has revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari is aware of the reinstatement of a former Chairman of the Pension Reforms Commission, Abdulrasheed Maina, into the civil service.
In a leaked memo to the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, Oyo-Ita said she warned the President against Maina’s reinstatement based on the implications it would have on the Federal Government’s anti-corruption war.
Maina has been accused of embezzling pensioners’ funds running into billions of naira and is currently under investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. He is on the run and his whereabouts remain unknown.
Following the public outcry that trailed Maina’s reinstatement, President Buhari had directed the HoS to investigate the circumstances that surrounded the return of Maina to the civil service.
Oyo-Ita’s memo titled, “Re: Abdulrasheed Abdullahi Maina,” with reference number HSCSF/HCSF/LU/COR/FCSC/750/T, was dated October 23, 2017. According to Sahara Reporters, it was received in the office of the Chief of Staff to the President on October 23.
The HoS said she met the President Buhari after the Federal Executive Council meeting of Wednesday, October 11, where she verbally warned him against bringing Maina back to the service. However, she did not say what the response of the President was after briefing him. The letter read in part:
“Further to your letter Ref. SH/COS/100/A/1570 dated October 23rd, 2017 on the above subject matter, I write to inform you of the circumstances leading to the irregular recall of Mr. Abdulrasheed Abdullahi Maina.
“I wrote to place on record the following facts as it permits to Mr. A. A. Maina who was dismissed from service on February 21st, 2013.
“The move to recall Mr. A. A. Maina was at the instance of a series of letters from the Attorney General of the Federation to the Federal Civil Service Commission requesting the commission to give consequential effect to the judgment that voided the warrant of arrest issued against Mr. A. A. Maina which formed the basis for the query and his eventual dismissal.
“The letters herewith attached as Annexes I-III are:
(a) Ref. HAGF/FFCSC/2017/VOL.1/1 dated 19th January 2017,
(b) Ref. HAGF/FFCSC/2017/VOL.1/ 2 dated 21st February 2017; and
(c)Ref. HAGF/FFCSC/2017/VOL.1/1 dated 27th April 2017.
“The FCSC thereafter requested that the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation should advise the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior to consider the AGF’s letter and make appropriate recommendations to the commission and this was so communicated to the Ministry of Interior.
“The Ministry of Interior took the matter to the Senior Staff Committee of the ministry and recommended the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina into the service as Deputy Director.
“The OHCSF forwarded the recommendation to the FCSC which has the constitutional responsibility for appointments, promotion, and discipline for further action.
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“The FCSC in consideration of the letter from the AGF and the recommendations of the SSC of the Ministry of Interior consequently approved and conveyed the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina with effect from February 21st, 2013 vide letter herewith attached as Annex IV.
“(vi) The letter of reinstatement, as communicated to HCSF Ref. FC. 4029.82/Vol. III/179 dated September 18th, 2017 attached herewith as Annex IV, ostensibly also copied the Ministry of Interior which is the one erroneously used to document Mr. A. A. Maina on a claim that he has resumed work since September 28th 2017. The Ministry of Interior informed the OHCSF of this development vide letter Ref. MI/1436/II/24 dated October 16th, 2017 from Ministry of Interior stating that Mr. A. A. Maina has resumed with effect from September 28th, 2017 is attached as Annex V.
“Please note that the OHCSF was never in agreement with the reinstatement and consequently never conveyed the approval of the FCSC to Mr. A. A. Maina nor approved his posting to the Ministry of Interior or any other MDA. Rather, I sought an audience with His Excellency, Mr. President on Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 after the FEC meeting where I briefed His Excellency verbally on the wide-ranging implications of the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina, especially the damaging impact on the anti-corruption stance of this administration.
“However, I have requested the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, to provide any documentary evidence to support the claim of reinstatement and posting of Mr. A. A. Maina by OHCSF, since after his dismissal.
“The letter to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior is attached as Annex VI. The foregoing is accordingly submitted for your information and further consideration.
“Please accept the assurances of my best regards.”