Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja
Staff of the Federal Ministry of Finance lamented on Friday night as former Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, bade them farewell and stepped out of the finance ministry.
The minister encouraged and joined the staff in prayers and praise worship to God for the over three years she handled the affairs of the ministry.
Adeosun finally bowed out of office at exactly 11 p.m on September 14.
Adeosun, who arrived the Office at 10 a.m. on Friday, spent the day completing outstanding tasks till 11 p.m. when she finally stepped out of office to a guard of honour mounted by the staff.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on Friday accepted Adeosun’s resignation, ending rumours that she actually resigned for allegedly presenting a fake certificate of exemption from the mandatory National Youth Service.
Buhari’s Special Adviser on the Media, Mr. Femi Adesina confirmed this development in a statement released. Her resignation was earlier denied by the presidency and officials of her ministry.
Adesina said Buhari accepted Adeosun’s letter of resignation and wished her well in her future pursuits, adding that the president appointed the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed to preside at the finance ministry.
However, Buhari’s choice of Ahmed is causing disquiet in the South-west where most people believe the next minister of finance should be picked from to replace Adeosun, who is from that geopolitical zone.
Explaining her resignation, Adeosun said: “I have, today, become privy to the findings of the investigation into the allegation made in an online medium that the Certificate of Exemption from National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) that I had presented was not genuine.
“This has come as a shock to me and I believe that in line with this administration’s focus on integrity, I must do the honourable thing and
Adeosun outlined some of the background to this matter, stating that she was born and raised in the United Kingdom and that her parental family home was in London.
She said: “My visits to Nigeria up until the age of thirty-four (34) were holidays, with visas obtained in my UK passport. I obtained my first Nigerian passport at the age of thirty-four (34) and when I relocated there was debate as to whether NYSC Law applied to me.
“Upon enquiry as to my status relating to NYSC, I was informed that due to my residency history and having exceeded the age of thirty (30), I was exempted from the requirement to serve. Until recent events, that remained my understanding.
“On the basis of that advice and with the guidance and assistance of those, I thought were trusted associates, NYSC were approached for documentary proof of status. I then received the certificate in question.
“Having never worked in NYSC, visited the premises, been privy to nor familiar with their operations, I had no reason to suspect that the certificate was anything but genuine.
“Indeed, I presented that certificate at the 2011 Ogun State House of Assembly and in 2015 for Directorate of State Services (DSS) Clearance, as well as to the National Assembly for screening. Be that as it may, as someone totally committed to a culture of probity and accountability, I have decided to resign with effect from Friday, 14th September, 2018.”