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Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Panel recommends Gwarzo’s dismissal, asks him to refund N104m severance package

Panel recommends Gwarzo’s dismissal, asks him to refund N104m severance package

Suspended DG SEC Mr.Mounir Gwarzo

The panel set up by Kemi Adeosun, minister of finance, to probe the allegations of corruption levelled against Mounir Gwarzo, suspended director-general of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), has recommended his dismissal from public service.

The panel headed by Mahmoud Isa-Dutse, permanent secretary of the finance ministry, has also asked Gwarzo to refund the N104,851,154 severance package he approved for himself.

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Gwarzo was an executive commissioner at SEC when former President Goodluck Jonathan appointed him to lead the commission on May 22, 2015.

On assuming office as DG, he approved the hefty package as entitlement for being an executive commissioner for two and a half years.

Despite the opposition mounted by the acting head of SEC legal department, Frana Chuwuogo, Gwarzo allegedly received over N104 million as benefits of his former position.

TheCable understands that the report of the inquiry has been submitted to Adeosun.

Gwarzo’s travails began after a group wrote a petition to the house of representatives, accusing him of abusing his office.

In the petition, Gwarzo was accused of awarding contracts to his family members and friends, in violation of the rules guiding the commission.

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It said Gwarzo, his family members and certain directors of the commission were shareholders and directors in companies “used to carry out illegal transactions”.

Details of the “illegality” were stated, with at least four different accounts said to be traced to him.

When Adeosun suspended Gwarzo, he accused her of punishing him because he failed to stop the audit of Oando as requested by the minister.

At the hearing of the legislative panel on Tuesday, Gwarzo insisted that the Oando audit made the minister move against him, an allegation she denied.

Defending his suspension, Adeosun said: “it’s not every time that government officials should be removed from office after they had been arrested”.

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