Tuesday, 15 February 2022

Buhari Appoints Bello-Koko NPA MD, As Panel Clears Hadiza Usman Of N165bn Fraud


President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of Mohammed Bello-Koko as the substantive managing director of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA).

A statement by Eric Ojiekwe, director of Press and PR in the Federal Minsitry of Transportation, made the announcement in a statement to TheNiche

Until his appointment, Bello-Koko was in acting capacity as the NPA MD following the sack of Hadiza Bala Usman.

Bello-Koko was elevated as the executive director of finance of the NPA to the acting NPA MD until his confirmation as the substantive boss of the NPA.

Meanwhile, Hadiza Bala Usman, the former managing director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), has been cleared of allegations of failing to remit N165 billion operating surplus to the coffers of the federal government

However, the 11-member committee set up by the ministry of transportation to probe the alleged fraud decided to shift its attention to allegations of insubordination to Rotimi Amaechi, the minister.

She was accused of ignoring ministerial directives and communicating directly with President Muhammadu Buhari.

Usman was originally suspended in May 2021 by the minister over an allegedly missing N165 billion but the committee did not find any evidence in its account reconciliation.

It was understood that when Amaechi presented the report to Buhari and asked for permission to remove Usman based on to “insubordination”, the president refused to give approval but instead directed the minister to issue a query to the former NPA MD.

Amaechi, presidency sources said Usman had already defended herself before the committee, but Buhari insisted that she be allowed to respond to the report before any further action is taken.

“A visibly disappointed Amaechi then directed Magdalene Ajani, the permanent secretary, to issue the query,” the source said, adding that Buhari refused to be presented with a “fait accompli”.

Conspicuously missing in the 10 items of query is the original reason for her suspension — the allegation that N165 billion was not remitted to the treasure single account (TSA) which made the headlines.

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