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Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo: More Trouble Mounts For Interior Minister, Over BettaGate Scandal

The woes of Interior Minister, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo appear to be mounting, this is as the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) commences an investigation into his involvement in the N438 million contract reportedly received by New Planet Projects, a company he co-founded…

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The woes of Interior Minister, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo appear to be mounting, this is as the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) commences an investigation into his involvement in the N438 million contract reportedly received by New Planet Projects, a company he co-founded.

A leaked document had revealed that the firm received the fund as payment for “consultancy fees” from the humanitarian ministry, which has been enmeshed in several scandals, resulting in the suspension of minister, Dr. Betta Edu, as well as the coordinator of the National Social Investment Programme Agency (NSIPA), Halima Shehu.

Although Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo denied culpability in any wrongdoing during his interview with Channels Television days after the scandal hit the fan, saying that he had not been involved in the affairs of the company. He added that he ceased to be a director of New Planet Projects since 2019.

However, the scandal which failed to abate, continued to ravage both the interior minister and his counterpart Betta Edu as well as the entire Humanitarian Ministry.

ENigeria News reports that the CBB, in a letter to Tunji-Ojo, asked him to appear before the Bureau today at its headquarters situated at the Federal Secretariat Complex, Abuja.
The letter was signed by the Director of Investigation and Monitoring, Gwimi S.P., on behalf of the Bureau’s Chairman, Murtala Aliyu.

“The Bureau is investigating a case of alleged breach of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers in which your name featured prominently. Consequently, you are invited for an interview scheduled as follows:

“Date: Tuesday, 16th January, 2024. Time: 1100hrs prompt. Venue: CCB Headquarters on 5th Floor, Annex III, Phase I, Federal Secretariat Complex, Abuja.

“This invitation is pursuant to the mandate and powers of the Bureau as enshrined in the Third Schedule, Part I, Paragraph 3 (e) to the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended. Please be properly guided,” the letter read.

In another statement yesterday, the Head of the Press and Public Relations Department of the CCB, Veronica Kato, confirmed that the Bureau had commenced an investigation into the alleged breach of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers by Tunji-Ojo.

“It can be recalled that the minister has been in the news recently for an alleged breach of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers, particularly, a conflict of interest in the execution of a contract awarded to a company belonging to the Minister by the suspended Minister of Humanitarian Affairs”, she said.

Meanwhile, calls for the suspension of Minister Tunji-Ojo continue to mount, with political stakeholders and civil society groups, joining their voices.
For instance, the Young Progressives Party (YPP) had on Sunday asked President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to suspend Tunji-Ojo over the scandal.

The YPP, in a petition addressed to Tinubu and signed by its National Chairman, Emmanuel Bishop Amakiri, alleged that Tunji-Ojo lacks the integrity to continue to be in office while the investigation into the allegations against him goes on.

The letter was copied to the National Assembly, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).

The party described the allegations as “heavy and huge”.
The YPP threatened a protest march on Thursday to press home its demand for the minister’s suspension.

Last week Tuesday, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had equally demanded the immediate suspension of the interior minister over the controversy surrounding the contract award.

Source: ENigeria News

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