‘Maina’s pension task team member’ disrupts hearing on reinstatement

A supposed member of the pension task team of Abdulrasheed Maina on Thursday disrupted the house of representatives hearing on his controversial reinstatement into the civil service.

Maina, former chairman, Pension Reform Task Team, was accused of being involved in pension fraud running into billions.

The “task team” member, sporting a face cap, stood abruptly during the proceedings on Thursday and said: “We are not being treated fairly in this matter. We are saying no.

“We cannot be stampeded. How will you not give everybody chance to discuss and talk? That was what happened in the senate in 2012 and we will resist it. Give us chance please, give us chance.”

Chorus of “who are you?” emanated from the audience to which he replied “task team”.

Aliyu Madaki, chairman of the committee, denied him a chance to speak.

“This is the parliament, we sent invitations. Maina sent someone who is here to speak for him. Please, we do not encourage rented crowd coming here to shout on behalf of anybody. What we are doing is a serious business,” Madaki said.

Madaki instead called on Mohammed Katu, counsel to Maina, to speak in his stead.

After taking the floor, Katu opposed the position of Winifred Oyo-Ita, head of service, that Maina was not reinstated.

“It is because of the zeal to bring the fact here before this panel that is why this is coming on. In essence, the issue of payment of salaries and reinstatement of Maina is important to his position as well,” Katu said.

“And that is why we want to reinstate categorically that the issue of his dismissal was because of the senate’s warrant of arrest. The warrant of arrest necessitated his going to court and the court gave a judgement.

“The judgement set aside the query that led to his dismissal and having set aside the query, the pointer is what should be his status? He has been reinstated to his earlier position.

“And in reinstating him to his earlier position, it means that you take him back to the status which he ought to have been if you had not dismissed him, and what is that status? His salaries and arrears should be calculated and be paid to him.”

The house of representatives is investigating the circumstances surrounding the reinstatement of Maina into the civil service.

SOURCE: The Cable