Tinubu suspends REA boss, 3 directors over alleged N1.2bn Fraud

PRESIDENT Bola Tinubu has suspended the Managing Director/CEO of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Ahmad Salihijo Ahmad, alongside three Executive Directors of the Agency, over N1.2 billion fraud allegation.

The three suspended Executive Directors are Olaniyi Alaba Netufo-Executive Director of Corporate Services; Barka Sajou-Executive Director of Technical Services; and Sa’adatu Balgore-Executive Director, of Rural Electrification Fund (REF).

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The suspension was confirmed in a statement by presidential spokesman Ajuri Ngelale, on Thursday.

The statement also revealed that the President has ordered a wider investigation into the conduct of the aforementioned officials, who are alleged to have engaged in fraudulent expenditure amounting to over N1.2 billion over the past two years, some of which has already been recovered by anti-graft agencies.

Following the suspension, Tinubu appointed five officials to serve in the agency’s new management team in an acting capacity.



    Abba Abubakar Aliyu was appointed as Managing Director/CEO, Ayoade Gboyega as Executive Director of Corporate Services, Umar Abdullahi Umar as Executive Director of Technical Services, Doris Uboh as the Executive Director of Rural Electrification Fund (REF) and Olufemi Akinyelure as the Head of Project Management Unit, Nigeria Electrification Project.

    The President urged the new appointees to uphold the highest standards of transparency and accountability in the discharge of their duties.

    He also reiterated his determination to elevate the yearnings of Nigerians for good governance and qualitative service delivery above the narrow interests of individuals who are entrusted to provide critical services to the Nigerian people.

    The ICIR has in the time past reported how Justice Adebukola Banjoko of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), High Court sitting in Gudu,Abuja has convicted and sentenced former directors of the REA to various jail terms for their culpability in the N5.2 billion scam.

    Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.

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