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Delta Gov. Okowa’s commissioner sacks aide for refusing to part with salary

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Delta Gov. Okowa’s commissioner sacks aide for refusing to part with salary
By Iteveh Ekpokpobe, Asaba

Delta State governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa’s commissioner for Science and Technology, Hon. Matthew Tsekiri, has sacked one of his special assistants, Comrade Karure Tene-Omadide, for not allegedly remitting to his coffers, part of his monthly salary, THE WITNESS reports.

In the same vein, the commissioner is said to have appointed his alleged girlfriend’s brother, Mr. Progress Akpofure Okotete, as a replacement for Tene-Omadide.

Investigation reveals that the sacked special assistant allegedly remitted N100, 000 representing 40 per cent of his monthly salary of N250,000 to the commissioner, Hon. Tsekiri.

The commissioner’s displeasure was allegedly informed by his demand for a raise of remittance from N100,000 to N150,000, a 20 per cent increase, which met vehement refusal of his special assistant, leading to his sack.

Documents available reveal that the sacked SA, who was appointed on 16th September 2019, had allegedly kept faith with the remittance up till the date of the disagreement.

On 29th November 2019, the sacked special assistant was said to have transferred N400,000 out of the N819, 202 received as accumulated salary from the Delta State government, into the account of one Miss Kesiena O. The payment was done on the directive of the commissioner to the lady alleged to be his girlfriend.

Also, on January 30th, 2020, Karure made a cash payment of N150,000 to the Commissioner Tsekiri. While N100,000 was for the remittance, N50,000 was a soft loan to the commissioner.

In the same vein, on 28th February 2020, the sacked special assistant, made a transfer of N100,000 out of his salary to the commissioner’s account.

We gathered that it was the demand by sacked special assistant for the commissioner to refund his N50,000 loan that resulted in his sack.

According to sources, the commissioner felt a 20 per cent upward review of remittance to N150,000 was necessary. The special assistant disagreed, and was fired.

In all, the special assistant allegedly paid to the commissioner a total of N650,000 or 50 per cent of an excess of N1,319, 000 received during the months of engagement.

At the time of going to press, the sacked special assistant had yet to receive his termination letter. However, an appointment letter signed by the secretary to state government, Barr. Chiedu Ebie, and dated March 1st, 2020, with reference number, SGD/399/T68A/1049 for a new special assistant, was already issued to one Mr. Progress Akpofure Okotete.

 

HON. TSEKIRI REACTS

In line with THE WITNESS investigative journalism practice, our reporter contacted Hon. Tsekiri for his own side to the allegations.

In his reaction, the commissioner denied the allegations stressing that “It’s a blackmail and attempt to bring him down.”

“Thank you for contacting me, my brother. The allegations by my former SA against me are wrong, not true. You can ask him, I did not instigate his sack. In the first place, he was attached to me by a political leader and I think he fell out with the leader and the leader himself requested for him to be changed. This whole thing is political, it’s beyond me.

“Yes, as my SA, we have done so many things together but not criminal. I think he (Tene-Omadide) is frustrated and just looking for every means to tarnish my image but thank God, my hands are clean,” he said.

Meanwhile, a group, Core Delta Youth, Uvwie Chapter, has condemned the act, describing it as sabotage on the contribution of youths towards the re-election of Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, during the 2019 election.

The group’s secretary, Comr. Felix Okeghene, urged the commissioner to revisit the matter and reappoint his sacked special assistant, Karure, who doubles as chairman of Core Delta Youths, Uvwie chapter.

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INVESTIGATION

Embattled Lagos Speaker, Obasa recalls suspended lawmakers amid corruption allegations

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Embattled Lagos Speaker, Obasa recalls suspended lawmakers amid corruption allegations
Lagos Assembly Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa

The Lagos State House of Assembly led by the embattled speaker, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, on Thursday, 26th March, 2020 lifted the suspension of two lawmakers, Moshood Oshun and Raheem Kazeem, THE WITNESS learnt.

Hon. Obasa, made the announcement at the start of plenary activities on the floor of the House.

According to Obasa, the Governor’s Advisory Council (GAC) and the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, called a meeting earlier in the week to intervene in the matter.

The Speaker said at the meeting, it was agreed that the House should reinstate the suspended lawmakers.

Recall that aside the suspension of the two members, two other principal officers, Olumuyiwa Jimoh and Rotimi Abiru, who were the former Deputy Majority Leader and the Chief Whip, respectively, were relieved of their offices.

Recall also that the sanctions was slammed against them by their colleagues on Monday, 9 March, 2020.

Hon. Obasa has been battling allegations of fraud for weeks now.

Recall, THE WITNESS reported that a non-governmental organisation, Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA),  recently accused the Lagos Assembly speaker of being reckless with funds meant for development.

In a petition to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), and signed by its executive director, Comrade Buna Olaitan Isiak, the group called on the anti-graft agency to investigate and prosecute Hon. Obasa for “gross financial misconduct and abuse of office allegedly perpetrated by the speaker so as to avert a further bleeding of the public treasury under his care and restore sanity in the functioning of the state’s legislative establishment.”

Specifically, HURMA urged the anti-graft agency to probe Hon. Obasa’s alleged financial recklessness and cornering of public funds through illegitimate means; and the alleged corruption and compromise of laid down procedures and rules deliberately foisted on the workforce of the assembly.

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INVESTIGATION

COVID-19: Panic over Abba Kyari’s health as more ‘critical’ details emerge

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COVID-19: Panic over Abba Kyari's health as more 'critical' details emerge

There is panic over the health of the chief of staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, Abba Kyari, as sources say he has other ailments that can hamper his rate of recovery from Coronavirus.

The Punch reports that doctors attending to Kyari, have obtained his medical records from Wellington Hospital, St. John’s Wood, London. “Abba Kyari’s medical records have been sent via email from Wellington Hospital where he goes for his check-up and also gets his treatment.

“He has some other health conditions which will be kept confidential. We are hoping for the best”, the source told

The Wellington Hospital, located in North London, deals with Brain surgery, Cardiac care, Orthopaedic care, Spinal care, Women’s health, Urology care and others.

Kyari was tested positive for coronavirus Tuesday.

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INVESTIGATION

COVID-19 in Nigeria is political, full of lies and fraud – Kogi gov, Bello

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COVID-19 in Nigeria is political, full of lies and fraud - Kogi gov, Bello

Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello, has said that the reported spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Nigeria is political, full of lies and an avenue for political office holders and corrupt officials to embezzle and steal the nation’s resources, THE WITNESS reports.

The governor disclosed this in a post on his verified Facebook page on Wednesday while denying rumours that he tested positive to the virus.

“Please stay at home and stay safe. I got NO Covid. It’s fake news. People of Kogi State, I love you all. Don’t mind the political aspect of COVID-19, maximum of 21 days, COVID-19 will disappear.

“Don’t panic, if you have catarrh (fluid), take hot water with garlic, ginger, lemon, lime and steam yourself, you will be good.

“There are a lot of lies, politics about COVID-19, I will not play with that. I will not play with my people’s life or pretend and steal money because of this so-called pandemic. Please, stay safe.

“I’m good, strong, hale and hearty. If COVID-19 comes to Kogi State, you have a governor who will combat and defeat the idiot.

“I can assure you, 90 percent noise about COVID-19 is political and economic financial material thing,” the governor disclosed.

SEE LINK FOR VIDEO: KOGI GOVERNOR, YAHAYA BELLO SPEAKS ON COVID-19

 

Malam Abba Kyari, President Buhari’s Chief of staff, now stricken by coronavirus, had contacts with many people since his return from Germany 14 March. One of his contacts was the Kogi State governor.

Kyari visited Bello on 17 March, to deliver Buhari’s message to the governor at the prayers marking the eigh days since the death of his mum.

Lai Mohammed, Akume, Shehu were all at the event.

Kyari reportedly travelled to Munich, Germany, on Saturday, March 7th, to meet with officials of Siemens over the Nigerian electricity expansion programme.

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