Nigeria queries minister over scandalous purchase of abandoned property

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The Federal Government has queried the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology, Dr Mohammed Bello, for allegedly buying what it described as “uncompleted carcass” building for the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in the sum of N7bn.

Bello was said to have superintended over the transaction for the purchase when he was still the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

He was also accused of giving out seven deep drilling rigs for borehole procured at N1.3bn to some unnamed individuals under “fraudulent arrangements.”

The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, made the allegations in a leaked query she issued to the permanent secretary on May 11, 2020.

The query with reference number HCSF/PSO/AOD/P.030/5B has “Allegations of acts of serious misconduct in your former post of permanent secretary in the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development: Preliminary letter/query” as its title.

Yemi-Esan said she issued the query on the order of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), who she said had been briefed about Bello’s conducts.

Quoting from the civil service rules, PSR 030401 and 030402, the HOCSF described the allegations against the permanent secretary as acts of serious misconduct which can lead to dismissal if proven.

She, therefore, gave the embattled permanent secretary a 72-hour ultimatum to respond to the allegations if he so desires.

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