Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday ordered the Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme, Prof. Usman Yusuf, to proceed on administrative leave immediately.

A statement issued by the Permanent Secretary, General Services Office, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Olusegun Adekunle, said with specific reference to recent developments at the National Health Insurance Scheme, the President had after due consideration, approved the establishment of an independent fact-finding panel to investigate the alleged infractions by the Executive Secretary and report back within two weeks.

Adekunle said the president had ordered Yusuf to proceed on administrative leave to pave way for proper investigation on the matter.

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According to Adekunle, “In order to create room for an unfettered investigation, Mr. President has approved that the Executive Secretary of the NHIS, Prof. Usman Yusuf should proceed on administrative leave immediately.

“In his absence, Mr. Ben Omogo, a Director of Administration in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation has been deployed to oversee the affairs of the scheme.”

Adekunle said government recognised the importance of the scheme as a strong mechanism for the delivery of public healthcare and wished to re-assure all Nigerians of its determination to place high premium on public interest.

He added that the panel would be inaugurated by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Boss Mustapha, on Friday.

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Membership of the panel include: Dr. Hassan Bukar -Chairman; Dr. Emmanuel Meribole –member (Director, HPRS, Ministry of Health); Mr. Adewale Owolo –member (Director, Audit, Auditor-General of the Federation); Mr. Shamsuddeen Bello –member (Deputy Director Expenditure, Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation); Mr. Ishaq Yahaya –member (Director, Certification and Compliance, Bureau of Public Procurement); Dr. Ekanem Udoh –member (Director of Science, Ministry of Science and Technology); and Mrs. Jummai Idakwo –Secretary (Director, Administration, OSGF).PMN

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