The Governing Council of National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) has suspended its Executive Secretary, Usman Yusuf indefinitely.
Briefing Journalists on Thursday after a two-day closed door meeting, the council’s chairperson, Dr. Ifenne Enyanatu, explained that an administrative panel would be set up to examine allegations against the Executive Secretary.
Already, Sadiq Abubakar has been appointed to act in his place.
This is the second time that Yusuf is being placed on suspension. In July last year, Minister of Health Prof. Isaac Adewole placed him on suspension to allow for administrative investigation, following a directive from Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (who was then the Acting President) that Yusuf be investigated over several allegations of inflation of contract and mismanagement.
The embattled Executive Secretary was, however, reinstated in February by President Muhammadu Buhari without any recourse to the suspension and the allegations.
According to Dr. Enyanatu, the latest suspension is based on various petitions and infractions against Yusuf.
Dr. Enyanatu said: “The council has met. We have been inundated with petitions. We also observed some executive infractions that we cannot ignore, especially in administration that is committed to transparency and accountability like Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
“So, with detailed examination or review of some of these documents, the council has made some landmark decisions. The first decision is that we have resolved to constitute an administrative panel of investigation immediately to examine the issues at stake.
“This administrative panel has three months to complete its assignment and report back to council to decide on way forward.
“Also, council resolved that the NHIS executive secretary is suspended indefinitely. The reason is to allow the panel unencumbered, unfettered space to do a thorough investigation.
“Council also resolved that the Acting Executive-Secretary now is Mallam Sadiq Adamu Abubakar. Also, I want you to know that we consulted and got the approval of the Minister of Health before we came to this decision.”