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Thursday, July 18, 2024

Sexual Harassment Allegations: Head of Service Suspends Permanent Secretary and Orders Investigation

Sexual Harassment Allegations: Head of Service Suspends Permanent Secretary and Orders Investigation

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Ibrahim Lamuwa, has been suspended following allegations of sexual harassment. The suspension was ordered by the Office of the Head of Service (HoS), pending the results of a formal investigation.

Folashade Yemi-Esan, the Head of Service, confirmed the suspension and the establishment of a committee to probe the allegations. A senior director in the OHCSF disclosed, “The permanent secretary has been suspended pending the outcome of the probe by the committee set up.”

The suspension follows a petition from the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Tuggar. In the petition, Simisola Ajayi accused Lamuwa of multiple instances of sexual harassment, detailed in a complaint filed by her lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN).

In his letter dated May 27, 2024, Tuggar expressed the seriousness of the allegations, urging the HoS to address the matter urgently. “Bearing in mind the gravity of the matter, I feel it necessary to draw your attention to it and ask that you handle it accordingly,” he stated.

An anonymous official confirmed the probe, emphasizing the seriousness with which the matter is being handled. “There are pieces of evidence and witnesses who will be invited to speak on the matter, so it is not a matter that will be swept under the carpet,” the official said.

Ajayi’s petition, dated May 29, 2024, accuses Lamuwa of creating an unsafe and uncomfortable working environment. She cited incidents from October 7 and November 10, 2023, where Lamuwa allegedly made inappropriate advances and propositions.

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