President Muhammadu Buhari has suspended the Head of Service of the Federation, Winifred Oyo-Ita.

Buhari suspended Oyo-Ita indefinitely.

He also named Folashade Yemi-Esan as the acting head of service “with immediate effect”.

This was contained in a statement signed by Mr Willie Bassey, Director Information, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.

The statement reads, “. Mrs. Yemi-Esan, who is the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, takes over from Mrs. Winifred Ekanem Oyo-Ita, who has been directed to proceed on an indefinite leave to allow conclusion of the investigation being carried out by @officialEFCC.

“The President has also approved the extension of the tenure of seven (7) retiring Permanent Secretaries for a period of one calendar year with effect from 1st October, 2019 to ensure stability in the Federal Civil Service and effective delivery on the nine priority areas of the administration as well as the mandates given to the new Ministers.

“The seven retiring Permanent Secretaries whose tenures are being extended by the President for a period of one calendar year are:

i.Mrs. Georgina Ehuriah-Ministry of Interior

ii.Mrs. Ifeoma I. Anagbogu-Federal Ministry of Women Affairs

iii.Mrs. Grace Gekpe -Federal Ministry of Information & Culture

iv.Dr. Umar M. Bello-Federal Ministry of Agriculture & Rural

Development

v.Suleiman Mustapha Lawal-Ministry of Foreign Affairs

vi.Mrs. Comfort C. Ekaro-Federal Ministry of Water Resources

vii.Mr. Olusegun A. Adekunle-General Services Office (Office of the

Secretary to the Government of the Federation)

“Similarly, Mr. President has directed the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation to commence the process for the selection of new Permanent Secretaries to replace all retiring Permanent Secretaries.

“The decision to extend the tenure of these Permanent Secs is premised on the need to ensure that the new Ministers are properly guided, briefed about their sectors & to ensure that a solid foundation is laid for the delivery on the Presidential Mandate which they jointly signed.

“The Permanent Secretaries will also help the Ministers to manage the process for the preparation of the 2020 Budget in line with the commitment of @NigeriaGov to return to the January-December budget circle and help develop various policies and programmes aimed at lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years.

“The action of Mr. President is in exercise of the powers conferred under Section 171(2)d of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).

She was hospitalized after a four-day grilling.

Oyo-Ita was interrogated for alleged abuse of duty tour allowance, money laundering and stealing of government funds.

About N600million has been allegedly traced to the account of one of her key aides who has been unable to give any justifiable explanation for it.

The EFCC has blocked the account and has initiated the process of obtaining an interim forfeiture clause to seize the cash.

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