The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) has reacted to media reports on a purported ‘secret’ appointment of Aisha Abba Kyari, daughter of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Chief of Staff as an assistant vice-president in the agency.
A civil rights organisation, Coalition Against Corruption and Bad Governance (CACOBAG) had alleged that Abba Kyari’s appointment violated set procedure at the NSIA, and that her position was not advertised just as she did not meet the criteria for the role.
However, a statement by Titilope Olubiyi, Head, Corporate Communications at NSIA on Sunday, debunked the allegations, stressing that they were based on false information and mischief.
In his words: “The clear mischief in the reports can be seen in the very false and unsubstantiated statements it contains: The report claims that AVP is the ‘highest level in the organisation’. This is not only false, but mischievous given AVP is the 9th level out of NSIA’s 22-level grading system.
“The report also claimed that she was given a car six months ahead when the position does not entitle the staff to a car in the first place. In fact, she will require two promotion cycles to qualify for a car entitlement.
“The report also claims that the candidate’s package was N32m, which is false!”
Olubiyi also faulted quotes attributed to NSIA directors in some media reports saying they “are also entirely false.”
“There was no time when any of the directors of NSIA made such statements and neither was there any document to validate the purported accounts as published.
“There is no correlation between the recruitment process of the candidate, and the approval process of an ED or Board member. These are mutually exclusive and independent events.”
On the allegation that the board members of NSIA refused to interview Aisha Abba Kyari, the agency also described it as false.
“In actual fact, a member in the appropriate sub-committee of the board participated in the process.
“Ms Abba-kyari’s recruitment was based on her application for one of the positions duly advertised by NSIA in mid-2018 while her selection for the post was based on her academic qualifications, international and local work experiences,” Olubiyi concluded.
Further investigations by this newspaper revealed that contrary to insinuations that her appointment could have been influenced by her father, Aisha Abba Kyari went through what sources at NSIA described as “stringent recruitment” which started in 2018.