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Senate Orders Finance Ministry, Others, To Explain Secret Withdrawals of Missing N7.5 Billion

The Senate has ordered the Ministry of Finance, Office of Accountant General of the Federation and Office of National Security Adviser to explain the disappearance of N7.5 billion from the 2 per cent National Automotive Council Design and Development Council (NADDC) Levy Account domiciled with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The Upper Chamber of the Assembly, on Tuesday gave the affected government institutions till Tuesday next week to explain the alleged “secret withdrawals.”

However, the Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Finance, Aliyu Ahmed, countered, insisting that the Ministry was not in possession of documents relating to the controversial fund.

Speaking on behalf of Permanent Secretary, a Director from the Ministry, Teslim Akintoye said “we don’t have any document to show for that transaction.”

Shocked by the revelation, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Account, Sen. Mathew Urhoghide berated the representative, maintaining that the approval was done in the Ministry of Finance .

Supporting the position of the chairman, the Vice Chairman of the Committee, Senator Hassan Hadejia asked, ” are you telling us that no document in the Ministry to show for it, everything emanated from your Ministry.”

The Chairman also added , ” You don’t appear before Senate when you don’t have anything to say .”

The representative of Office of Accountant General of Federation , Alexandra Adeyemi however confirmed that the money in question was released and it going to be recovered through budgetary process .

The Office of Accountant of the Federation failed to present the list of beneficiaries of the fund in question a part was earmarked for car loans to Security Officers.

The Committee was able to establish that the fund was withdrawn without involvement of National Automotive Council Design and Development Council (NADDC), but after some years , the agency was notified .

After heated debate on the matter, the Committee resolved to dig deeper into the secret withdrawal of N7.5 billion because there is no evidence that the money was paid back into Federation Account.

According to chairman, we are going to look the deeper into the matter, we have to give ample time into this matter , we must do proper status on it, to let Nigerians know what is going on., We want to see what the President is going to do about this colossal fraud.

The Committee further resolved that a full blown public hearing may be done on the issue.

The query had said, “A total sum of N3,836,000,000.00 (Three billion, eight hundred and thirty-six million naira) was irregularly withdrawn from the 2% National Automotive Council Levy Account with the Central Bank of Nigeria, Abuja in 2 installments of N2,800,000,000 (in 2005) and N1,036,000,000.00 (in 2006) by the Accountant-General of the Federation and the Federal Ministry of Finance as car loan to be granted for the Security Personnel Car Purchase Scheme Loan.

“The transaction was carried out by the Presidency in collaboration with the Bank of Industry, the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Accountant-General of the Federation without the involvement of NAC, the account owner.

“However the principal and the accrued interest from the fictitious loan have not been paid back nor are records available on the beneficiaries, agreement documents, moratorium, duration of the loan, the yearly interest rates accruable and how the fund will be paid back by the beneficiary.

“The Director General has been requested to intensify correspondence with the Honourable Minister of Finance, Accountant-General of the Federation and the Presidency to recover the fund (‘loan’).”

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