The immediate past Acting Director General of the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Mrs Yetunde Oni, was forced to bow out in September by powerful forces within the Presidency, Newspeakonline can authoritatively confirm.
Oni, who attained the age of 60 years on September 21, 2017, was forced out the same month on the basis of attaining retirement age as against the plan to get her appointed as a substantive DG.
Newspeakonline authoritatively gathered that Oni, who acted as the Chief Executive of the agency for several months, performed excellently throughout her tenure. Her performance, despite the fact that she is not a pharmacist, impressed the Health Ministry which was finding a way to get her an appointment as a substantive DG since she would seize to be a civil servant in September, 2017.
It was learnt that Oni was also fighting hard to get the appointment so that she would not need to leave the agency after September 21. The former Acting DG was said to have been so consumed by her ambition to the extent that she approached the Presidency for the favour.
But the powerful players in the Presidency played a fast game on her by asking her to write a letter expressing her request so it can be facilitated officially. Her request exposed her age and the need to leave.
But convinced that her good performance spoke for her, and unsuspecting of the sinister motive of the politicians, she submitted the letter dated August 25, 2017.
But to her surprise, the Presidency issued a letter directing her to proceed on compulsory retirement immediately.
In the September 28, 2017 letter from the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and signed by the Permanent Secretary, General Services Office, Dr R. P. Ugo, Oni was asked to hand over to the most senior officer in the agency.
The letter, which referred to industrial dispute in the agency as the topic, was deliberately silent on Oni’s request for an appointment as the substantive DG.
Meanwhile, a very reliable source told newspeakonline that pharmacists, who see the agency’s top position as their exclusive right, had put the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, and other relevant top government officials under pressure to appoint a pharmacist in place of Oni throughout her tenure. But her performance was largely responsible for why she was not removed for a substantive DG.
It was also part of the reason she was not made the substantive DG all through her tenure.