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Passports of Edu, Umar-Farouq Seized by EFCC Amid Humanitarian Ministry Scandal


The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has taken a significant step in the ongoing investigation into scandals within the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation by seizing the passports of the suspended Minister, Betta Edu, and her predecessor, Sadiya Umar-Farouq.

As Edu faced questioning at the EFCC headquarters on Tuesday regarding the alleged N44 billion fraud in the ministry, it was revealed that managing directors of three commercial banks were also interrogated in connection with the financial irregularities.

The scandal involving Edu surfaced after a leaked memo indicated she directed the transfer of N585 million to a private account, leading to public outrage and her subsequent suspension by the President. Edu’s passports were confiscated to prevent her from leaving the country during the investigation.

Her predecessor, Umar-Farouq, was also questioned for 12 hours on Monday, and her passport was seized as part of her bail conditions.

According to an EFCC source, the passport seizures aim to prevent the ministers from fleeing while the investigations are ongoing.

The scandal also involves Ms Halima Shehu, the National Coordinator and CEO of the National Social Investment Programme, who has been suspended indefinitely over alleged financial misappropriation.

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar criticized the All Progressives Congress (APC), accusing them of using the ministry as a “cash cow.” He called for broader reform within the ministry and a thorough investigation into all those involved in the alleged fraudulent activities.

In response, the APC cautioned Atiku against jumping to conclusions, emphasizing the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.

The PDP has additionally called for the suspension and investigation of the Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, over his alleged involvement in a N438 million contract awarded by Edu.

As the EFCC’s investigation continues, the Nigerian public awaits further developments in this unfolding scandal that has rocked the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.

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