- How Aisha Buhari Ousted State House Permanent Secretary for Refusing Illegal Directives
Aisha Buhari, the wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, has been revealed to be the driving force behind the ouster of the recently redeployed Permanent Secretary of the State House, Jalal Ahmed Arabi.
Numerous sources have revealed that Arabi, a seasoned technocrat and civil servant, has been redeployed to the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, following a spat with the President’s wife, which involved a directive from Mrs. Buhari, for the Permanent Secretary to pay estacodes to her children when they travel on foreign trips.
Additionally, following a directive from President Buhari, for all the children in the First Family of Nigeria to only be flown on Business Class, in order to cut down on the cost of travel, Mrs. Buhari is said to have tried to flout the President’s orders by ordering the former Permanent Secretary to book First Class tickets for her children on future trips. A directive that the Permanent Secretary rebuffed.
Arabi is said to have explained to the President’s wife that he was unable to pay estacodes to her children when they traveled as they were not civil servants or political appointees.
During the Permanent Secretary’s tenure, sources also revealed that Mrs. Buhari is also attempted to direct Mr. Arabi to provide her with the sum on N2million a month for healthcare expenditures— which was also declined by the Permanent Secretary.
Prior to Arabi’s redeployment from the State House, the situation between the Permanent Secretary and the First Lady came to a head when she explicitly attempted to direct him to pay her aides more days than they were entitled to on foreign trainings and meetings.
Due to Arabi declining Mrs. Buhari’s request, the President’s wife is said to have started insulting the Permanent Secretary, following which, a shouting match ensued.
Mrs. Buhari is said to have immediately contacted the SGF to send over one of her key allies, the erstwhile Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Tijjani Idris Umar, to immediately replace Arabi for insubordination.
In a circular issued by the Head of Service to the Federation, Folasade Yemi-Esan on 23rd March, 2020, Arabi has now been posted to the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, while Tijjani, has assumed his role as the State House Permanent Secretary