Usman Yusuf, Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), has claimed that he was suspended for refusing to release N975million to the Ministry of Health.
Yusuf stated this on Friday when he appeared before the House of Representatives panel investigating his suspension.
The NHIS governing board recently suspended him, after accusing him of financial infractions and abuse of office.
Addressing the house committee in Abuja, Yusuf alleged the panel that investigated him was bribed.
He said his “refusal” to grant the request from the Health ministry “led to the setting up of a panel to probe me.”
“And the panel delivered as the panelists were given N19 million, even the security too were given money,” he said.
Asked whether he has any evidence, Yusuf responded in the affirmative, saying, “I even have documented evidence of how the money was shared”.
Yusuf also revealed that the day the governing board announced his suspension, was the day he was meant to present a report on the violation of the public procurement processes at the agency.
“Why was I suspended on October 18 and not 19th of October? The 18th of October was the day I was going to present a result of the forensic audit of the activities of HMOs.
“Eighteenth of October was nothing but preemptive coup at the NHIS. It was a gang up to stop my fight against corruption.
“These are all allegations that have been recycled. They were all investigated by the ICPC and EFCC; and they found nothing and I was cleared. They wrote to me clearing me,” he said.
Yusuf denied illegally awarding contracts at will at the agency, but admitted that a company owned by his brother, Mohammed Kabir-Yar’Adua, was awarded a N406million contract at the agency.
He insisted that the company won the contract through due process in 2016.
On his part, the Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole, insisted that Yusuf was justly indicted of corrupt practices.
Adewole, represented by Permanent Secretary at the ministry, Abdulaziz Abdulahi, insisted that cases of financial infractions were established against the NHIS executive secretary.
“All the allegations levelled against him are 100 per cent correct,” Abdullahi said.