The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has tasked President Muhammadu Buhari to come out clear on why he has been protective of the Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) Prof. Usman Yakubu, who has been variously indicted for alleged corrupt practices, including the reported syphoning of over N25 billion from the coffers of the agency
The party said with Monday’s forceful repression of the suspension of the Executive Secretary by the NHIS Governing Council over humongous corruption allegation and abuse of office, it has become clear that the Presidency cabal is directly complicit in the NHIS fraud and is seeking every means to ensure a cover-up.
Nigerians can recall that this same Executive Secretary was in July 2017 suspended by the Minister of Health over alleged gross misconduct and corrupt practices, only for President Buhari, upon his return to the country in February, 2018, reinstated him while he was still a guest of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The PDP invites Nigerians to note how the Presidency has continued to provide official cover for accused official even without the slightest investigation on the allegations and sanction by both the minister and the Governing Council.
We ask: Why is the Presidency protecting an official of the government openly indicted for corruption? What is the Presidency trying to conceal by ensuring that Prof. Yusuf remains the Executive Secretary after his indictment?
Furthermore, why is the Presidency vehemently opposed to any form of investigation on the activities of NHIS under Prof. Yakubu? Is it true that there are fears in the Presidency that an investigation will expose the alleged involvement of individuals close to the President in the reported fraud in the scheme?
Finally, while the PDP describes as reprehensible that an administration which prides itself as fighting corruption will continue to provide official cover for its officials indicted of corruption, the party urges Nigerians to continue to hold President Buhari responsible for the corruption in NHIS, as well as the siphoning of trillions of naira from various agencies, under his watch.