Category: Cover stories Written by Francis Okeke Hits: 9783
President Goodluck Jonathan has directed the Head of Civil Service of the Federation Isa Bello Sali to initiate disciplinary action against the Chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, for ignoring the National Assembly.
The directive came two days after the Senate had in its resolution Wednesday asked Jonathan to either choose between it and Maina. Jonathan immediately denied shielding Maina.
The Senate had in December, 2012 issued a warrant for his arrest over alleged mismanagement of over N664 billion pension funds following his repeated failure to appear before its two committees probing the pension funds.
Abati said the directive followed Jonathan’s receipt from the Inspector-General of Police of a status report on efforts by the police to execute the warrant issued by the Senate for the arrest of Maina.
He said that Sali is to immediately commence disciplinary action against Maina for absconding from duty.
He said: “Section 030402 of the Federal Government’s Public Service Rules lists Absence from Duty without Leave as an act of Serious Misconduct punishable by dismissal.”
Inspector-General of Police Mohammed Abubakar had stated in his report to Jonathan that after receiving the Senate’s warrant for the arrest of Maina, he had constituted a team of detectives under the leadership of a Deputy Inspector-General of Police to find and arrest him in compliance with the Senate’s directive.
Abubakar said the police has since mounted surveillance at Maina’s home and office but has been unable to arrest him because he has gone into hiding and stayed away from both locations since the warrant was issued, leading to his publicly being declared wanted by the police.
In his directive to Sali, Jonathan noted that the Inspector-General’s report clearly indicated that Maina had absconded from his official duties.
Jonathan directed Sali to act expeditiously on the disciplinary proceedings against Maina and report back to him on actions taken.
On his part, Sali has directed the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior to initiate disciplinary proceedings against Maina, a Deputy Director in the Customs, Immigration, and Prisons Pensions Office (CIPPO), an agency under the ministry.
In his directive to the Permanent Secretary, Sali said: “Following the submission of a report from the Inspector-General of Police to Mr. President of the inability of the Nigeria Police to locate the officer, it has become apparent that he has absconded from duty without leave, an action which, he said, carries severe penalty in line with Public Service Rules No. 030301 to 030304.”
This was disclosed in a press statement signed by Sali’s spokesman Tope Ajakaiye yesterday.