N585m FRAUD: Group Kicks Over Plot To recall Suspended Minister, Betta Edu, urge President Tinubu to remain neutral in corruption cases

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A group, under the aegis of Progressive Volunteers for Tinubu/ Shettima (PVT) has kicked at what it termed, ” the planned secret plot” to recall the suspended Minister of Humanitarian Services and poverty Alleviation, Dr. Betta Edu through the back door even as the outcome of the investigation over the allegations of fraudulent financial transactions made against her has not been made public.

Recall that Betta Edu was suspended alongside others on grounds of financial irregularities and highhandedness, and the whole country jubilated to that effect, giving kudos to the President Bola Tinubu led administration for having zero tolerance for corruption. However, there are rumours making the rounds that the embattled Minister may have been cleared by the presidency of any wrongdoing through the back door without getting the needed clearance or official statement from the investigation agencies, saddled with the responsibility to handle the matter and make the outcome public.

President Bola Tinubu
President Bola Tinubu

Speaking to newsmen, the National Secretary of Progressive Volunteers for Tinubu/ Shettima (PVT) Alhaji Ado Audu Gashua (Dan Buram of Bade) called on the presidency to remain neutral and steadfast in its position to rid the country of corruption regardless of whose ox is gored, adding that to recall the suspended minister without getting valid report on the financial allegations against her may dent the image of the Tinubu led administration and cast doubt over Federal Government commitment to fight corruption at all levels.

The embattled Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Betta Edu, got involved in a messy disbursement scandal, culminating in her suspension by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu through a statement by presidential spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, and ordered the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede, “to conduct a thorough investigation into all aspects of the financial transactions” involving the ministry and “one or more agencies there under her”. Mrs. Edu was alleged to have got herself involved in the approval of N585,198,500.00 to be disbursed into a personal account.

In a letter allegedly signed by the humanitarian minister, she instructed the Accountant General of the Federation, Oluwatoyin Madein, to transfer the sum to the account of one Oniyelu Bridget as grants for vulnerable groups in four states.

The call by the group is not the first, human rights activist, Femi Falana, had called for Edu’s resignation, describing the whole controversy as an “extremely embarrassing drama”. The legal luminary and Senior Advocate of Nigerian ( SAN) had cautioned Mrs Edu to stop insulting Nigerians, adding that she failed to deny that she approved the funds to be paid to a private account instead of direct transfer to the beneficiaries’ accounts from the ministry’s.

Edu, the youngest in the President’s cabinet before her suspension, was a fast-rising amazon in the political space having occupied state and national offices at a young age.

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