The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, on Wednesday announced the suspension of the Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Mounir Gwarzo, over allegations of financial impropriety levelled against him.
Also suspended were two management staff members of the commission.
They are the Head of the Media Division, Mr. Abdulsalam Naif; and the Head of Legal Department, Mrs. Anastasia Braimoh. They were also alleged to have engaged in financial impropriety.
Adeosun, according to a statement signed by the Deputy Director of Press in the Ministry of Finance, Mrs. Patricia Deworitshe, said the suspension was to allow for unhindered investigations of the allegations levelled against the embattled DG and the two other officials.
The minister stated that the suspension was in line with the Public Service Rules 03405 and 03406.
Adeosun, according to the statement, has also set up an administrative panel of inquiry to investigate and determine the culpability of the suspended DG.
She also directed the suspended DG to immediately hand over to the most senior officer at the commission, whom our correspondent gathered was one Abdul Zubair, the Director of Corporate Affairs, pending the conclusion of investigation by the API.
The statement read in part, “The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has suspended the Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Mr. Mounir Gwarzo, from office to allow for an unhindered investigation of several allegations of financial impropriety levelled against the director-general.
“The suspension is in line with the Public Service Rules 03405 and 03406.
“The minister has set up an Administrative Panel of Inquiry to investigate and determine the culpability of the director-general.
“She has directed the suspended SEC director-general to immediately hand over to the most senior officer at the commission pending the conclusion of investigation by the API.”
Sources at the commission confided in one of our correspondents that some of the allegations levelled against the suspended DG were that he allegedly collected severance package in the sum of N104,851,154.94 while still in service.
He is also alleged to be a director in Medusa Investment Limited in violation of Public Service Rule 030424.
Gwarzo was also alleged to have awarded contracts to the same company and others to which he was related, thus resulting in a conflict of interest. Punch