President Bola Tinubu has been told to sack the embattled Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Betta Edu, over alleged corruption.
The advice was given by the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA).
HURIWA on Saturday called for the resignation of Betta Edu and urged her to present herself to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for questioning.
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This demand arose from the ongoing N44.8 billion fraud investigation in NSIPA involving the alleged deposit of public funds into a private individual’s bank account.
HURIWA stressed the importance of adhering to the 2009 public sector financial regulations, which prohibit transferring public funds to private accounts.
The group highlighted concerns over the alleged payment of over N34 billion in public funds into private accounts by the head of the social investment coordinating office, suggesting that the President should suspend the representative involved in the allegations.
HURIWA appealed to the President and EFCC to ensure fair enforcement of anti-graft laws, avoiding favoritism towards top officials in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
“We are not accusing the minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation of committing any infractions, but based on the media statements that her office has issued so far, the attempt to convince Nigerians that it is lawful to keep public fund in private account is just like the polemic promoted by one erstwhile civilian governor of Kano State in the second Republic,” HURIWA said.
“It is incongruous and indeed puerile to say that on one hand, the EFCC arrested one official of the same government over allegations of payments of public funds into private accounts but on the same breath, a cabinet level minister is inundating the public space with her submission that keeping public money in private account of someone heading a certain portfolio, is appropriate.
“This sounds illogical and fallacious and by the way, if as the Minister argued that under a certain civil service rule, public funds can be kept under private accounts, why then does the financial regulations act governing public service in Nigeria say the exact opposite?”
HURIWA cited that the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Dr Betta Edu, has raised alarm over what she termed “disgruntled elements” trying to dent her reputation following the federal government’s ongoing N44.8 billion fraud investigation in NSIPA.