THE SENATE said that President Muhammadu Buhari had ignored a report that accused senior officials in government Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) of using more than N1 trillion in unlawfully obtained funds.
The Senate’s condemnation of the MDAs came after the Senate Committee on Public Accounts’ review of the Auditor General of the Federation’s 2017 and 2018 reports, chaired by Senator Matthew Urhoghide (PDP, Edo South).
Speaking to reporters after the reports were presented, Senator Hassan Hadejia (APC, Jigawa North East), Vice Chairman of the Senate Public Accounts Committee, noted that since 1999, the committee has never been able to submit four reports to the Senate. He explained that the 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 auditor general reports have been submitted and considered by the Senate.
“We have combined two bills, including the Federal Audit Bill, which has already been approved,” Senator Hadejia added. The second Bill about the position of the Auditor General for the Federation will be discussed the following week. It aims to approve a certain mandate for the acceptance and use of the findings from the Public Accounts Committee.
Over N1 trillion worth of money has been recovered by us so far, money that we have declared has to be returned.
We sent our reports to the executive branch of government, but as of right now, we haven’t even received an acknowledgment of the report.
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, and 45 other Ministries, Departments, and Agencies were indicted by the Senate yesterday during an earlier consideration stage.
The Senate further ordered the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, to return $10 million to the Consolidated Revenue Fund, CRF, which had been spent on legal fees and technical costs that produced no results.
$5 million was set aside for legal fees, and an extra $5 million was allocated for technical costs out of the $10 million that was anticipated to be recovered, just as $5 million was claimed to represent 5% of the $9.3 billion in hydrocarbon losses suffered by Nigeria between 2013 and 2014.
Even though the name of the law firm was kept a secret, it was anticipated that it would handle the required legal steps so that NIMASA could refine its intelligence-based efforts to follow the country’s hydrocarbon movement across the world.
According to the AuGF report, the funds came through a new-generation bank dollar account.
The 2017 and 2018 reports also named the Federal Ministry of Environment, the National Library, the Financial Reporting Council, the Federal Ministry of Finance, the Federal Mortgage Bank, the Energy Commission, the Nigerian Copyright Commission, and the Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Iron as additional MDAs that were indicted.
Others include the National Examination Council (NECO), the Ministry of Justice, the Federal Civil Service Commission, the Public Complaints Commission, and the Universities of Uyo, Abuja, Oye Ekiti, and Uyo.