Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Winifred Oyo-Ita and Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari
Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Winnifred Oyo-Ita, Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari during the FEC meeting.
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja
The Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari; and the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Winnifred Oyo-Ita, on Wednesday embraced publicly before the commencement of the meeting of Federal Executive Council at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The development came exactly a week after the two top government officials engaged in an altercation at the same venue.
Oyo-Ita, on arrival at the Council Chambers, venue of the meeting went straight to Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and greeted him.
She was still discussing with Osinbajo when Kyari arrived.
All smiles, Kyari and Oyo-Ita embraced publicly as cameramen struggled to get good shots of the public display of affection.
Other members of the council clapped for them as the drama unfolded.
A heated argument took place between the two officials last week.
The altercation was believed to be based on Oyo-Ita’s leaked memo to Kyari on the controversial reinstatement and subsequent posting of the embattled former Chairman of the Pension Reforms Commission, Abdulrasheed Maina.
The mild drama played out in the presence of Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo; President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, John Odigie-Oyegun; service chiefs and ministers.
Saraki, Dogara, Oyegun and the service chiefs were present to witness the inauguration of the new Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, as well as the inauguration of the 2018 Armed Forces Remembrance emblem.
Mustapha succeeded in calming frayed nerves after Osinbajo and Kyari were seen engaging the visibly angry Head of Service in a discussion.
The Deputy Chief of Staff, Ade Ipaye, also moved in and persuaded Oyo-Ita to return to her seat when it became obvious that all those in attendance were watching the drama with keen interest. (Punch)
The Presidential Media Aide, Mr. Garba Shenhu has described media reports of a fight between top government officials at the State House as fabrications that could only have been conjured by correspondents who would probably make better fiction writers than journalists.
He continued his tirade on the journalists in a meeting with them Friday by branding them are mere irresponsible writers.
The presidency also denied that there is feud between the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari and the Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita.
Shehu insisted that it was impossible for the conversation between Kyari, and Oyo-Ita to have been heard by any journalist, as the distance between the State House correspondents and the two government officials as they addressed the Vice President at Wednesday’s FEC meeting, would have made their conversation completely inaudible to the journalists.
It insisted that it was taking the matter beyond what it is to suggest that mere debate and argument over issues, translated to a feud, a fight or a clash.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Shehu, stated this in a short meeting with State House Correspondents at the the Media Center, to appeal to them to be responsible in their reportage of the number seat of power in the country.
“By tradition, the media organizations send their best reporters to the State House. This should reflect, at all times on the quality of reporting.
“I am a journalist myself, and in journalism, you are not supposed to report anything other than the facts of what you heard or observed directly, or what you were told by a firsthand or authoritative eyewitness,” he said.
“You cannot add two and two to make twenty-two and present it to the public as news.”
According to him, “People can debate and argue over issues, but to suggest that there was a feud, a fight or a clash was to take matters beyond what they were.”
Shehu also denied categorically any suggestion that the two government officials had been summoned to see the President over the alleged skirmish, referring to that conclusion as yet another example of conjecture.
“Top government officials of that calibre see the President on a regular basis. To suggest that they were summoned to see him as a result of a so-called feud is just a fabrication, a conclusion that is below the level of responsible journalism that we expect from our State House correspondents,” he said. (The Sun)
Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita
Olusola Fabiyi, Abuja
The Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, has said President Muhammadu Buhari is aware of the reinstatement of a former Chairman of the Pension Reforms Commission, Mallam Abdulrasheed Maina, into the civil service.
She however said she warned the President against it.
Oyo-Ita said that her warning was based on the implications such reinstatement would have on the anti-corruption war of the Federal Government.
The HoS stated this in her memo to the Chief of Staff to the President, Mr. Abba Kyari.
The memo, with reference number HSCSF/HCSF/LU/COR/FCSC/750/T, was dated October 23, 2017.
The memo, titled, “Re: Abdulrasheed Abdullahi Maina,” was received in the office of the Chief of Staff to the President on October 23.
A copy of the memo was sighted by our correspondent in Abuja on Monday.
The President had directed the HoS to investigate the circumstances that surrounded the return of Maina to the civil service.
He gave the directive following the public outcry that trailed Maina’s reinstatement.
Maina, whose whereabouts is still unknown, has been accused of embezzling pensioners’ funds running into billions of naira and is currently under investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Explaining further, the HoS said she met the President after the Federal Executive Council meeting of Wednesday, October 11, where she verbally warned Buhari against bringing Maina back to the service.
She, however, did not say what the response of the President was after briefing him.
Oyo-Ita said, “Please, note that the OHCSF was never in agreement with the reinstatement and consequently never conveyed the approval of the FCPC to Mr. A. A. Maina, nor approved his posting to the Ministry of Interior or any other MDA
“Rather, I sought audience with His Excellency, Mr. President on Wednesday, 11th October, 2017 after the FEC meeting where I briefed His Excellency verbally on the wide-ranging implications of the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina, especially the damaging impact on the anti-corruption stance of this administration.”
The letter partly read, “Further to your letter Ref. SH/COS/100/A/1570 dated 23rd October, 2017 on the above subject matter, I write to inform you of the circumstances leading to the irregular recall of Mr. Abdulrasheed Abdullahi Maina.
“I wrote to place on record the following facts as it permits to Mr. A. A. Maina who was dismissed from service on 21st February, 2013.
“The move to recall Mr. A. A. Maina was at the instance of a series of letters from the Attorney General of the Federation to the Federal Civil Service Commission requesting the commission to give consequential effect to the judgement that voided the warrant of arrest issued against Mr. A. A. Maina which formed the basis for the query and his eventual dismissal.
“The letters herewith attached as Annexes I-III are:
(a) Ref. HAGF/FFCSC/2017/VOL.1/1 dated 19th January 2017,
(b) Ref. HAGF/FFCSC/2017/VOL.1/ 2 dated 21st February 2017; and
(c)Ref. HAGF/FFCSC/2017/VOL.1/1 dated 27th April 2017.
“The FCSC thereafter requested that the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation should advise the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior to consider the AGF’s letter and make appropriate recommendations to the commission and this was so communicated to the Ministry of Interior.
“The Ministry of Interior took the matter to the Senior Staff Committee of the ministry and recommended the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina into the service as Deputy Director.
“The OHCSF forwarded the recommendation to the FCSC which has the constitutional responsibility for appointments, promotion and discipline for further action.
“The FCSC in consideration of the letter from the AGF and the recommendations of the SSC of the Ministry of Interior consequently approved and conveyed the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina with effect from 21st February, 2013 vide letter herewith attached as Annex IV.
“(vi) The letter of reinstatement, as communicated to HCSF Ref. FC. 4029.82/Vol. III/179 dated 18th September, 2017 attached herewith as Annex IV, ostensibly also copied the Ministry of Interior which is the one erroneously used to document Mr. A. A. Maina on a claim that he has resumed work since 28th September, 2017. The Ministry of Interior informed the OHCSF of this development vide letter Ref. MI/1436/II/24 dated 16th October, 2017 from Ministry of Interior stating that Mr. A. A. Maina has resumed with effect from 28th September, 2017 is attached as Annex V.
“Please note that the OHCSF was never in agreement with the reinstatement and consequently never conveyed the approval of the FCSC to Mr. A. A. Maina nor approved his posting to the Ministry of Interior or any other MDA. Rather, I sought audience with His Excellency, Mr. President on Wednesday, 11th October, 2017 after the FEC meeting where I briefed His Excellency verbally on the wide-ranging implications of the reinstatement of Mr. A. A. Maina, especially the damaging impact on the anti-corruption stance of this administration.
“However, I have requested the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, to provide any documentary evidence to support the claim of reinstatement and posting of Mr. A. A. Maina by OHCSF, since after his dismissal.
“The letter to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior is attached as Annex VI. The foregoing is accordingly submitted for your information and further consideration.
“Please accept the assurances of my best regards.”