Group urges FG to protect whistle-blower dismissed by Dutch Embassy

A group, Human and Environmental Development Agenda, has urged the Federal Government to jump in defense of a Nigerian whistle-blower, one Ms Onoghaife, who was fired by the Dutch Embassy in Abuja.

Onoghaife was allegedly sacked for exposing the alleged corruption of a former Dutch Ambassador to Nigeria, Robert Petri, in relation to the investigation of the Oil Mining Licence 245 scam.

In its statement on Thursday jointly signed by its Chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, and others, HEDA called on the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, to look into Onoghaife’s sacking.

Others, who signed the statement, were Dr Godwin Ojo of ERA/FoE; Nicholas Hildyard of The CornerHouse; Simon Taylor of GlobalWitness; and Luca Manes of Re:Common.

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The group called on the Federal Government to invite the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs to explain why Onoghaife was sacked despite having been promised that her job was safe after reporting Petri’s breach of confidentiality.

Petri allegedly leaked confidential information to senior officials of Shell Development Corporation of Nigeria in relation to the probe.

HEDA said, “This dutiful and patriotic Nigerian was sacked by the Dutch embassy for performing her civic duty. It is unfortunate that she has been left to carry her cross all lone.

“It takes courage to blow the whistle on wrongdoing by the powerful. The whistle-blower did not flinch from her clear duty to do so. However, instead of being protected, as all whistle-blowers should be, she was dismissed from her post despite a previous assurance that her job would not be at risk from her whistle-blower action.

“The Ambassador, by contrast, remains a Dutch government civil servant.”


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