Some 45 directors at the federal ministry of foreign affairs have colluded with the highly corrupt Attorney General of the federation, Mohammed Bello Adoke and the supervising minister of foreign affairs, Professor Viola Onwuliri to frustrate their retirement from plum foreign ambassadorial positions in a situation that may yet redefine retirement of federal civil servants in Nigeria.
The AGF interfered in their retirement after receiving hefty sums of bribe money from the career civil servants.
AGF Adoke, who is one of the most remarkably corrupt ministers in the cabinet of President Goodluck Jonathan, issued a memo to the president requesting that 45 directors who are currently acting as ambassadors in several foreign missions who had earlier retired in December 2013 after completing an 8 year tenure be recalled to continue as directors.
The directors had been asked to proceed on retirement according to a federal civil service directive, but a source knowledgeable about their plot to sit tight in power told SaharaReporters that the directors, instead of retiring met and contributed millions of naira which was passed to the AGF and minister of justice Adoke, who then advised them to sue the federal government to frustrate their retirement and removal from their plum positions.
After receiving the bribe, Mr. Adoke then reportedly recommended to the 45 directors lawyers that would file a lawsuit in Abuja to the ambassadors.
Soon as the ambassadors filed a bizarre lawsuit he wrote a strong memo to President Jonathan asking that he recalls the directors pending the determination of the lawsuit, last week President Jonathan reversed the retirement of the 45 director based on Mr. Adoke’s recommendation, however, the federal civil service commission rejected his legal advice saying it portends danger for the civil service as more civil servants would engage in such acts of insubordination to frustrate their retirement from service.
President Jonathan then turned to the supervising minister of foreign affairs, Professor Viola Onwuliri to carry out to the order.
With few hours left in the position, Mrs. Onwuliri then requested the permanent secretary in the ministry to implement Attorney General Adoke’s advice but the Permanent Secretary reportedly refused the directive citing the position of the federal Civil service commission on the matter and urging the minister to recall the directors to Abuja while the minister of justice is pressured to fight the lawsuits.
Our sources stated that since Mrs. Onwuliri was part of the scam she bypassed the Permanent Secretary by issuing a poorly worded telex riddled with spelling errors to foreign missions asking that the missions maintain the “ status quo ante” by retaining the retired directors at their respective positions. The telex a copy of which was obtained by SaharaReporters had to be corrected in some instances with a red pen.
Mrs. Onwuliri hurriedly sent the telex instead of waiting for the new minister ministry to properly interpret the AGF’s directive. Her action was described as a breach protocol according to our sources.
Mrs. Onwuliri is expected to be replaced by a new minister of foreign affairs; Ambassador Aminu Wali, who is currently Nigeria’s ambassador to China.
The Nigerian Senate cleared Wali yesterday after President Jonathan nominated him as minister early this year.