Prominent individuals and eminent persons, groups, on Wednesday, hailed President Muhammadu Buhari for suspending the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. David Lawal; and the Director-General of National Intelligence Agency, Ambassador Ayo Oke.
Among the groups that commended the President for suspending the SGF are the Socio-Economic Rights Accountability Project, the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights and the Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders.
The suspension of Lawal and the NIA boss was contained in a statement on Wednesday by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina.
While Lawal was suspended in connection with the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on North-East, Oke was suspended in connection with the uncovering of $43m (about N13bn) by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos, over which the NIA has made a claim.
According to the statement, Buhari has ordered that thorough investigations be conducted into the allegations against the two top government officials.
The President therefore set up a three-man committee, comprising the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN); the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno; and headed by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo to investigate the allegations.
The committee has 14 days to submit its reports.
The statement read, “President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered an investigation into the allegations of violations of law and due process made against the SGF, Mr David Babachir Lawal, in the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on the North-East.
“The President has also directed the suspension of the SGF from office pending the outcome of the investigations.
“In a related development, the President has ordered a full-scale investigation into the discovery of large amounts of foreign and local currencies by the EFCC in a residential apartment at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos, over which the National Intelligence Agency has made a claim.
“The investigation is also to enquire into the circumstances in which the NIA came into possession of the funds; how and by whose or which authority the funds were made available to the NIA, and to establish whether or not there has been a breach of the law or security procedure in obtaining custody and use of the funds.
“The President has also directed the suspension of the Director-General of the NIA, Ambassador Ayo Oke, pending the outcome of the investigation.
“A three-man committee, comprising the AGF and Minister of Justice, and the NSA, headed by the Vice-President, is to conduct both investigations.
“The committee is to submit its reports to the President within 14 days.
“The most senior Permanent Secretary in the SGF’s office and the most senior officer in the NIA are to act, respectively, during the period of investigation.”