Abubakar Kolo, the Secretary of the Niger State Transport Authority (NSTA) has been removed from his position for allegedly insulting the Commissioner of Transport, Hajiya Rahamatu Muhammad Yar’adua.
This was confirmed by the State Head of Service (HOS), Hajiya Salamatu Abubakar, during an interface with the state House of Assembly Committee on Transport in Minna on Thursday.
The alleged rancour between Yar’adua and Kolo started during the review of the 2021 budget performance and the screening of the 2022 budget of the Ministry of Transport by the House Committee on Transport on Monday, PM News reports.
Kolo had reportedly pointed out loopholes in claims made by the commissioner, noting that she (the commissioner) was not telling the truth regarding the details about some buses that had been procured for NSTA.
The commissioner subsequently felt insulted and alleged that she was insulted by the secretary during the screening.
However, Abubakar said the investigation was ongoing to unravel the truth, adding that the redeployment was not a punishment.
A member representing Chanchaga Constituency, Ahmed Marafa argued that the action of the HOS was not in line with civil service rules, adding that the secretary was being victimised for revealing the facts.
The lawmaker directed the HOS to redeploy him to his former position.
“Return him to his office to enable him to complete the assignment (given) to him by the committee; if he is not redeployed to his office, then the passage of the budget will be delayed,” he said
Similarly, Malik Madaki and Ahmad Bello, members representing Bosso and Agwara constituencies, said the lawmakers would not fold their arms and allow any civil servants to be victimised for being truthful.
They said during the budget screening, the committee raised a question regarding NSTA which the secretary answered by telling the truth without insulting anyone.
Meanwhile, Alhaji Ibrahim Garba, Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Transport, said the secretary insulted the commissioner when he told the committee that the commissioner was not telling the truth about the buses procured for NSTA.