NPA: Suspended MD hires foreign influences to beg Buhari

Ms Bala Usman

Fresh insights have emerged that the suspended Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority NPA, Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman, has been frantically reaching out to prominent local and foreign leaders, including global institutions, in a desperate bid to return her job at the authority.

Meanwhile, experts have cautioned against unnecessary and undue foreign interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign nation such as Nigeria, especially in a matter involving alleged fraud and abuse of office.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on May 5, approved the indefinite suspension of Usman from office over her failure to remit the operating surplus of the NPA over a four- year period into the national purse, an allegation she has refuted.

In the aftermath of her suspension, the embattled NPA boss is alleged to have commenced a well-funded lobby of prominent Northern monarchs, State Governors and influential clerics, to prevail on the President to rescind the suspension order. When it appears this tactic was faltering, her team began reaching out to African political and business leaders, who are known to be in regular communication with President Buhari.

Sources revealed that she is also leveraging on her relations with global bodies such as the International Ports and Harbours Association (IAPH), where she was recently re-elected as Vice President of the African Region, and the London -based International Maritime Organisation IMO, where she chairs one of its technical committees, on behalf of Nigeria.

Meanwhile, last Saturday, former President of Liberia, Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, posted a tweet expressing her support for Ms. Usman. Her tweet reads: “I am disheartened to hear about the suspension of Nigerian Ports Authority MD @hadizabalausman, who I have known to be an accomplished leaders and dedicated public servant. I urge adherence to the rule of law and fair and equal treatment as the situation evolves”.

Interestingly, Nigerians on social media have been reacting to the tweet. Most of the reactions tend to suggest that the former Liberian leader face her country’s problems and challenges, and let Nigerians  resolve her internal issues on their own terms.

As reported by Sahara Reporters, a twitter user using the handle @danleety wrote: “You never care to wait for the outcome of the panel, what if she’s (found) corrupt, and you are still backing her without in-depth knowledge” (of the facts).

Another user @jacksonphn wrote: “Please respect yourself and mind your business. Don’t let us drag you on this lane and expose how you used your sons to loot Liberia “.

For grandmasta_01: “Ma, the mindless killings going on in Nigeria has not disheartened you for once, it’s the Hadiza Usman’s issue. There’s more to this Ma. Kindly keep your relationship personal and not drag into the Naija matter. It is not usually pleasant”, he wrote.

For @rotilaw, “The MD was appointed by the President and remains in office at his pleasure. That the President has removed her is within his authority. I seriously doubt if Madam Sirleaf who (would) have brooked such intervention when she was President of Liberia.

For @Hon_oluwatosin, “Is Liberia corruption -free? If yes, you can speak as a patriotic (patriot) for her. Meanwhile, there’s nothing wrong in changing her, the Ministry isn’t her heritage, but a public office. Thank you for the concern”, he wrote.