• N73.5bn special funds diverted
• N10bn expended by NASS without approval
• N3.3trn NNPC revenues not remitted to FAAC
• $235.6m from sale of gas to NLNG missing
From Fred Itua, Abuja
THE Federal Government, through the office of the Auditor-General of the Federation (AGF), yesterday, submitted its 2014 audit report of all ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to the leadership of the National Assembly. The report which also captures embassies and foreign missions opened a can of worm as a staggering sum of money was discovered to have been frittered away or unremitted.
The AGF, Mr. Samuel Ukura, who presented a copy of the report to the Clerk of the National Assembly, Alhaji Salisu Maikaswa, for onward presentation to both chambers, gave highlights of how monies were diverted or spent by MDAs during the period under review.
According to the AGF, the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) failed to remit N3,234577,666,791.35 to the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC), which was held in January, 2014. Similarly, sale of gas to Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas (NLNG) to the tune of $235,685,861 was not paid to the federation account. Rather, it was transferred to some undisclosed Escrow accounts. “Relevant documents were not made available for verification,” AGF noted in the report.
The report also indicates that acquisition and payment of N3,630,000,000 property was made without a Certificate of Occupancy (CofO).
It was alleged in the report that a total payment, amounting to N73,547,759,436 was made, contrary to established purpose of the funds.
“The sum of N36,432,423,968.73 was released to the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) for the rehabilitation and construction of dams instead of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources.
“The sum of N2,894,531250.00 was spent for the procurement of hand sanitizers for schools and critical public places.
“The sum of N31,324,952,239.87 was payment of subsidy on fertilizer and youth employment in agricultural programmes.
“The sum of N2,395,851,978.00 was payment for group Life Assurance Premium for Armed Forces budget in 2013, but not backed. The sum of N500,000,000 was made as payment for agricultural programmes.
“These were at variances with the purpose of the fund. No evidence of these lines of expenditure in the 2014 Appropriation Act,” the AGF revealed in the report.
Ironically, the management of the National Assembly, headed by the Clerk, made payments of N9,514,568,222.62, without raising payment vouchers. According to the AGF, the management of the National Assembly violated the nation’s financial regulation.
In the same period under review, personal advances were reportedly granted to 112 staff of the National Assembly from recurrent votes
and 50 members of staff from general service votes from July to December, 2014 for various purposes, all amounting to N1.162,009,305.00.
In the audit report, the AGF revealed how the Embassy of Nigeria in Washington DC, United States of America, realized internally generated revenue (IGR) between 2012 and March 2015, but expended the whole amount on sundry expenses. The said amount was put at $3,705,428.00.
The audit report indicted the leadership of the Nigerian Prisons Service. The AGF in the report said Pay As You Earn (PAYE) tax of N2,036,758,176.75 was deducted and said to be remitted to Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). According to the report, there is no evidence of remittance and nothing was produced for audit confirmation.
At Press time, Daily Sun could not ascertain when the Clerk to the National Assembly will forward the report to the leadership of both chambers for further consideration