The Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending, NIRSAL, Abbas Masanawa, has been relieved of his exalted position.
According to sources, Masanawa’ removal may not be unconnected with his alleged role in the corruption activities that rocked Nigeria’s financial system for which the probe of suspended CBN chief, Godwin Emefiele was instituted.
NewsTrack Nigeria through a bankable source learned that Masanawa was confined into the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS) as he faces interrogations over his role in the Emefiele’s alleged loot.
Insiders told our correspondent that Mr Masanawa was arrested four weeks ago on his return to Nigeria from Hajj; and has remained there while their investigation continued.
Mr Masanawa’s arrest stemmed from his role as the managing director of Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company (NSPMC). He resigned from NSPMC in 2022.
The NSPMC is a subsidiary of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) responsible for printing and minting the nation’s currency notes, coins and high-level security documents.
Mr Emefiele was fired as CBN governor on June 9 and was arrested the next day by the DSS.
THE WITNESS, which tried to corroborate with Dr. Peter Afunanya, spokesperson for the DSS, said in his reaction to the development simply said in a message to it on Friday that ‘No comments’.
Mr Masanawa served as special adviser to Mr Emefiele and steadily moved up the rung to become the executive director at the NSPMC.
Former President Muhammadu Buhari appointed him as the organisation’s managing director in September 2018.
In May 2022, Mr Mansanawa declared his intention to contest the governorship election in Katsina without stepping down from office. He promptly resigned from his position.
After he failed to clinch the ticket, Mr Emefiele appointed him as the new head of NIRSAL, following the removal of the agency’s former boss Aliyu Abdulhameed.
Recall, that the Federal Government will on August 23, 2023 arraign Emefiele and his associates for an alleged N6.9 billion procurement fraud at the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Maitama, Abuja.
Emefiele will be arraigned alongside a female CBN employee, Sa’adatu Yaro and her company, April1616 Investment Limited on 20 charges of procurement fraud, conspiracy and conferring corrupt advantages on his associates.
Meanwhile, when NewsTrack Nigeria made inquires over the success of the NIRSAL programme in the South East/South-South the responses were quite discouraging as over 80% of the applicants were left unattended to even after they had gone through their training programmes.