JUST IN: Reps intervene in Ngige, NSITF rift, say action draconian
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By Tony Akowe, Abuja
The House of Representatives on Tuesday faulted the suspension of the Management of the Nigeria Social insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, describing it as draconian and against presidential directives.
Adopting a motion of urgent public importance sponsored by Rep. Leke Abejide, the House resolved to investigate the matter with a view to ensuring that justice is done.
Rep. Abejide said the Minister lacked the power to suspend the management of the agency since there was a board which never met to take any decision on the fate of the management, adding that even If the board had met, only the Secretary to the Government of the Federation has the power to issue such letter.
Rep. James Abiodun Faleke said the suspension of the management was to allow the Minister have access to the budget of the agency in which he inserted about N2 billion projects and single handedly got his wife who work in the office of the Head of Service to sign a letter granting him permission to hire Insurance brokers for the fund.
Rep. Sada Soli whose investigative report on the NSITF is yet to be considered by the House said from the outcome his investigation, he can conveniently conclude that the present Chairman of the NSITF board is a crony of the Minister.
Soli said the Minister refused to inaugurate Comrade Frank Kokori as Chairman of the board even after his appointment by the President because of his realisation that Kokori will not allow corrupt practices in the agency.