President Muhammadu Buhari has finally ordered the sack of Prof. Usman Yusuf, Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme.
Prof. Yusuf was enmeshed in different scandal including financial misappropriation and lack of proper management of the scheme.
A source in the government had told Saharareporters that Prof. Yusuf was undermining the board, feeling no one could touch him due to his relationship with the cabal in the government.
Isaac Adewole, Minister of Health, first suspended him in June 2017, after an administrative panel found him guilty of allegations of gross misconduct, nepotism, financial recklessness and theft of public funds to the tune of N919million.
In October, Adewole made the suspension indefinite pending action from President Muhammadu Buhari.
However, in February 2018, the President reinstated him. The reinstatement was confirmed by a letter to the Minister, signed by the Chief of Staff to the President Abba Kyari, which made no mention of the allegations against Yusuf but simply urged him to “work harmoniously with the Minister”.
He was again suspended in October 2018 after which a panel was set up by the Federal Ministry of Health recommended his dismissal following findings that he allegedly mismanaged N919m.
Not satisfied, a panel was set up by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation in December 2018. The panel found him culpable of the allegations made against him and also recommended him for dismissal
Announcing the sack, Mrs. Boade Akinola, Director, Media, Federal Ministry of Health, said in a statement that the President had approved his termination and has appointed Prof. Mohammed Sambo to resume as the new head of NHIS.
“Following the recommendations of report by an independent fact finding panel on the NHIS, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the termination of appointment of the Executive Secretary, Prof. Usman Yusuf, who has been on administrative leave and has approved the appointment of Prof. Mohammed Sambo as the new executive secretary.
“Similarly, the President also approved the dissolution of the governing board of the NHIS and directed the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health to exercise full powers of the council pending the constitution of a new board.
“President Buhari has also approved the appointment of Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu as Director–General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. The appointment is in line with the provisions of Section 11(1)(3) of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (Establishment) Act, 2018,” the statement read.