The Senate has demanded a refund of N66.8bn which were allegedly diverted under the leadership of Accountant general of Nigerian federation from the solid mineral development fund and stabilisation funds to ministries, agencies and departments of the Federal Government.
According to the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation, the beneficiaries of the fund are the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Nigerian Army, Ministry of power, Ex-President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and former Vice president, Namadi Sambo, among others.
Senator Matthew Urhoghide, who is the chairman of Senate Committee of Public account, in his report on audit queries by auditor-general, stated that investigation proves that in June 11,2015, about N1.5 billion naira was used as entitlement to Jonathan and Sambo.
It was also reported that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, collected about N20 billion naira from development of natural resources funds and N17.9 billion naira collected from other sources.
Report also stated that part of the N30 billion naira given to INEC to conduct the 2015 general elections, N20 billion naira was released on January 12, 2015, while N10 billion naira was released on the 3rd of July, 2014.
From the stabilisation funds, Sao Tome Precipe and Ghana was given N847 million naira, while Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) also collected N87 billion naira to conduct the commencement of new voters registration. INEC have re-funded N21 billion naira, owing a balance of N66.7 billion naira.
Other beneficiaries of the diverted funds are:
Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria – N13bn
Ministry of works – N2bn
Ministry of foreign affairs – N3.6bn
Ministry of sports – N500 million
Monetization arrears due to power holding company of Nigeria’s staff – N57.5bn
2010 accelerated capital budget – N80bn
Loan to accelerate 2010 capital budget – N70bn
Loan to facilitate 2013 capital budget (Fourth quarter) – N80.7bn
Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission loan in 2014 – N6bn
It was noted that N15bn was released to Lucius Nwosu as judgement dept judge out of N37bn for genocide by Odi; N14bn was released to Ministry of Power for Kasshibilla Hydropower Transmission projects, among others.
It was also noted that N32bn was used for the completion of third-quarter and fourth-quarter of the 2013 capital projects: N3bn loan to INEC to speedup the 2013 electoral process, N2bn was used to fund army operations in 2013; N3.5bn loan to Nigerian Army for the recruitment of nine thousand (9,000) in 2013, among others.
It was reported by the Auditor-general that an amount totalling N455 billion naira were withdrawn from development of Natural Resources Fund as loans to various beneficiaries between 2004 to 2015, contrary to the established purposes of the funds.
After consideration and adoption of it’s committees on public accounts, the Senate ordered the Accountant-general to ensure the refund within 30 days, stating that the development fund of natural resources funds belong to the Government.
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