…Says feeding students of FG colleges not under her purview
…Dares ICPC to publish names of beneficiaries
Okwe Obi, Abuja
Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Social Development and Disaster Management, Sadiya Umar Farouq, has disassociated herself and the ministry from alleged diversion of N2.72 billion budgeted for the feeding of school pupils during the lockdown.
Chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and other Offences related Commission (ICPC), Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, during the 2nd National Summit on Diminishing Corruption, had disclosed that part of the N2.67billion was diverted to private accounts.
But, Farouq, in a statement, yesterday by her Special Adviser on Media, Nneka Ikem Anibeze, said the report by ICPC was “twisted and misinterpreted by mischief makers and directed at the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs.”
She said: ” The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development wishes to dissociate itself from a trending report in the media titled N2.72b for School Feeding During Lockdown Diverted To Private Accounts.”
She explained that, “The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development hereby informs the public that the Federal Government Colleges school feeding in question is different from the Home Grown School Feeding which is one of its Social Investment Programmes.
“That the School Feeding under scrutiny is feeding of students in Federal Government Colleges across the country and is not under the Federal ministry of Humanitarian Affairs which only oversees Home Grown School Feeding for children in Primaries 1-3 in select public schools across the country.
“That the over N2.5 billion which was reportedly misappropriated by a senior civil servant (name withheld) took place in a different ministry and not the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.
“That the ICPC recovered
N16 billion worth of assets from the said ministry which was paid into an individual account for non-official purposes and not the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.”
She continued: “The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs , Disaster Management and Social Development describes those casting aspersions on the Minister Sadiya Umar Farouq as malicious and unfair and calls on The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC to publish the names of persons, federal colleges and school heads whose names have been found to be associated with the missing funds and also freeze the accounts where the said funds were diverted.
“The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs therefore calls on the general public to disregard the false reports being linked to the ministry as it is not in anyway involved in the Federal Government Colleges School Feeding.”