Senior staff members of the National Intelligence Agency have written a petition against the nomination of Mr I. A. Yusuf, the agency’s Director of Administration, as an ambassador.
They also informed President Muhammadu Buhari of the appointment of one Ms. Atinuke T. Mohammed believed to be the girlfriend of the DG’s former boss and mentor as Consul-General in Dubai.
The senior staff also accused the Director-General of unilaterally making decisions without consulting other members of the Senior Management Committee.
Faulting the nomination of Yusuf, they stated that he had few months left before retirement, adding that he has an ongoing case with anti-graft agency.
They posited that the NIA DG has suppressed all actions on the case against Yusuf with the anti-corruption agencies.
The petition reads, “We gave him this advice in order to avoid a situation where it will look like the implementation of government rules and regulations are selective and discriminatory where some people will be seen as being above the law.
“We tried to draw his attention to the fact that, Mr Yusuf has barely a year or so to retire from the service, and that his nomination runs contrary to the circular barring officers with less than 24 months in the service from becoming ambassadors.
“It is also a fact that he has an uncleared petition against him which borders on damning allegations of corruption that was sent to the EFCC and ICPC by some of our junior colleagues believed to be his disgruntled close confidants.
“Your Excellency, we advised the DG that these uncleared issues of time and corruption allegations against him may jeopardize his chances of passing through the DSS and Senate screening if discovered, which may negatively impact our chances of retaining the slot thus consequently allowing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to take over the slot.
“The DG also dismissed our fears here outrightly, bragging openly, that the Senate is in his pocket. He said that he had loaned the Senate, the sum of $7m that is yet to be repaid, and that the agency played a leading role in the emergence of the Senate Leadership, as such he expects a positive reciprocal payback.”
Informing President Buhari of the appointment of Ms. Mohammed, the senior staff said she was below rank when appointed and due process were not followed.
“The second abhorrent and contentious issue is the appointment of a young and very junior lady Ms. Atinuke T Mohammed believed widely to be the girl friend of his former boss and mentor as the Consul General in Dubai.
“The DG has stubbornly refused to listen to all wise counsel despite the fact that the lady was just a GL.14 Officer when she was appointed. She has now been hurriedly promoted to GL 15 without following any due process. There are highly qualified directors and deputy directors who are her seniors by far, but were denied,” the petition reads.
The senior staff of NIA alleged that a lot of government money was used to redeploy all officers that are her seniors to Tunis, Abu Dhabi and other places, in order to maintain her authority and seniority in Dubai, a decision that automatically means the downgrading of the Consulate General in Dubai.
They urged the president to urgently act on the matter adding that the issue has created resentment and anger in the agency asking that an independent team be set up to investigate the allegations.
“Your Excellency, the issue of national security is paramount to your administration, therefore all issues pertaining it that would reverse your gains should not be treated with kid gloves.
“These two issues has caused a lot of resentment, anger and disillusionment among the generality of officers in the agency.
“We, therefore, plead with your excellency to do something urgently to douse the current tense atmosphere of uncertainty that has engulfed the agency which is clearly affecting staff progression and productivity.
“We finally plead with your excellency to order an independent inquiry into these allegations and why the anti-graft agencies refused to act on the petitions they received and acknowledged several months ago.”