President Bola Tinubu has suspended the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Betta Edu, from office with immediate effect.
This is coming after the president ordered an investigation into the N585 million transferred into a private account.
Against Nigeria’s Financial Regulations 2009, the Minister instructed the Accountant-General of the Federation to transfer the funds into a private UBA account held by project accountant Bridget Oniyelu, as evidenced by a circulated memo.
The president had instructed the Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to launch a comprehensive investigation into all financial transactions associated with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, including any relevant agency.
The suspended minister has been directed to hand over her responsibilities to the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation. Furthermore, the president urged her to actively cooperate with the investigating authorities throughout their inquiry.
In a broader move, the president has appointed a panel led by the Coordinating Minister of Economy and the Minister of Finance. This panel is tasked with conducting a thorough assessment of the financial architecture and framework of social investment programmes. The aim is to implement comprehensive reforms that will eliminate any institutional weakness, ensure the exclusive benefit of disadvantaged households, and restore public confidence in these initiatives.