Nigeria: Finally, president Buhari fires embattled NHIS boss, entire board
London, July 2, 2019 (AltAfrica)-President Muhammadu Buhari has terminated the appointment of the Executive Secretary of National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Prof. Usman Yusuf almost four months after he was found guilty by a presidential fact finding panel
The President dissolved the entire Governing Board of NHIS and directed the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health to exercise full powers of the Council pending the constitution of a new Board.
To avoid leadership vacuum for a critical organisation as the NHIS, the president also approved the appointment of Prof. Mohammed Nasir Sambo as the new Executive Secretary of organisation.
A statement by the Director, Media and Public Relations in the Ministry of Health, Mrs Boade Akinola, said following the recommendations of report by an Independent Fact Finding Panel on National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Yusuf, who had been on administrative leave, was removed from office.
The statement added that the “President Buhari has also approved the appointment of Dr. Chikwe Andreas Ihekweazu as Director –General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). The appointment is in line with the provisions of section 11(1)(3) of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control(Establishment) Act, 2018,” it said.
The health insurance scheme has been facing leadership crisis and also shrouded in controversies since the appointment of Mr Yusuf.
Before the termination of Mr Yusuf’s appointment, he had been suspended from office twice.
Mr. Yusuf, 54, a professor of hematology /oncology and bone marrow transplant took over the state-run health insurance provider on July 29, 2016 but his reign at the agency was bedevilled by controversies.
A probe panel later set up by the Federal Government last year had recommended the immediate sack of Yusuf and also advised that an interim management team be appointed for the organization to prevent vacuum. The President, however did not act on the report until Monday’s announcement of his sack.