Connect with us

News

PIB: Senate queries N98.4m payment for enlightenment campaign

Published

on

The Senate has queried the Ministry of Petroleum Resources over the payment of N98.4 million for the printing of leaflets for awareness programme for the Petroleum Industrial Bill (PIB) without due process.

Its committee on Public Accounts has, therefore, accepted the 2015 Auditor-General of the Federation’s Report, which exposed mismanagement of public funds in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources.

The report stated that contrary to the procurement process, an entry in the cash book for N98.4 million was made in favour of a company for printing of leaflets for awareness campaign programme for the PIB.

“There was no formal award of contract and it was also observed that the approval for the payment was via memo presented by the Director (Press) to Ministerial Tender Board meeting of 9th and 11th October 2013,” the report said.

The report added that the permanent secretary had been requested to take disciplinary measures against the erring officers in line with provisions of extant regulations.

But the Ministry of Petroleum, in a written response, said: “Adequate publicity was made: M/S Dangrace and Partners Limited were selected based on proven capabilities and competence.

“It should be stated that veritable costing proposals were submitted and approved before the authorisation for the award and production of Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) leaflets. The department complied with necessary rule and procedure.”

However, the Auditor-General in another query called to question the payment of N39.7 million to the account of two staff of the ministry for project monitoring in 2014.

The query noted that contrary to the e-payment policy of the federal government, the total sum of N39.7 million was paid to 178 staff of the ministry for project monitoring and evaluation in 2014.

“Instead of direct payment to individual accounts, the disbursement was paid into two accounts vide PV. Nos. MPR/CAP/828/2014 and MPR/CAP/826/2014 of 02/12/14.

“It was curious that 178 officers in the division of the ministry could be involved in project monitoring and evaluation at the same time. Other irregularities observed included duplication of officers names, duplication of locations, monitoring of projects outside the statutory purview of the ministry and its parastatals, payment of Duty Travel Allowance (DTA) and other travelling allowances to staff for monitoring parastatals located in Abuja,” it stated.

The report said there was no evidence presented for audit review by the M & E division for the project monitoring exercise carried out by the 178 officers despite the payment of N1.4 million to coordinating secretariat for such purpose.

The report also said that the expenditure couldn’t be accepted as a legitimate charge against public funds.

But the petroleum ministry, in a written response, said: “The two staff were appointed as the project accountants for the project. People were grouped and assigned to various projects for prudence and accountability.

“Reports were submitted to the appropriate department. Due process and procedure were followed in the best interest of the service.

“Duplication of officers’ names and locations were due to officers visiting different places after grouping. No officer was paid DTA for monitoring parastatals within Abuja. “

Not satisfied with the response of the ministry to the queries, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Account, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, has written to the ministry asking that the indicted officers be made to return the money to the Federation Account.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

News

NNPC to inject fresh N1tn into road projects

Published

on

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited is to provide additional N1tn for road projects in Nigeria, NNPC Group Chief Executive, Mele Kyari, has said.

Kyari, in a video clip seen in Abuja, disclosed this on Thursday during a tour of the ongoing construction work on the Agbara-Badagry road, Lagos.

He said the N1tn would come through the Federal Government road infrastructure tax credit scheme.

He said, “We are very happy about the state of this road development. We are very happy with this intervention across the country not just in this place. We are doing 1,800km across the country. We are taking another set of over N1tn of investments in road infrastructure in the country.

“We believe that this tax credit system which Mr. President has put in place is the game changer for our country.

“We believe that in the next 24 months, there will be massive change to the entire road network in this country and this is why the NNPC is your company and working for all of us.

“We think that it is the best way to intervene and bring up our infrastructure. We are adding another set of cash, we have not reached the final numbers, but I know it is over N1tn.”

According to a Punch report, the NNPC in the third quarter of 2021 announced its intention to provide funds for the reconstruction of selected road projects in order to ease the movement of petroleum products.

This was executed under the tax credit scheme that was funded by the NNPC through the Federal Inland Revenue Service in accordance with the President’s executive order 007.

The construction exercise was under the management of the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, as the NNPC provided funds for the construction of 1,804.6km of roads at a cost of N621,24bn.

Continue Reading

News

Military under pressure to compromise elections, says CDS Irabor

Published

on

Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, has disclosed that the security agencies and the military have been under pressure to compromise general elections through financial inducement.

He however assured Nigerians that the military would maintain neutrality in the whole electoral process.

He spoke at the weekly ministerial press briefing on Thursday in Abuja and gave updates on strides made by the military in the fight against insurgency, terrorism and banditry.

He stated that military personnel were being trained to follow the codified rules of engagement before, during and after the elections.

The CDS disclosed that over 300,000 persons had been freed from the hands of abductors since 2016 while refugees who fled the North-East owing to insurgency were already returning.

General Irabor who admitted there were few sabotaurs within the military asserted that they had not succeeded.

He debunked a recent allegation by an international news media which accused the military of carrying out over 10,000 illegal abortions on female victims of the war in the North-East.

According to him, it is impossible for the military to have been engaged in a planned abortion programme since 2013 and as the military commander in charge of Operation Lafia Dole between 2016 and 2017, he never heard of any such thing.

The CDS also revisited the alleged Lekki tollgate massacre in 2020, insisting that the Nigerian military is not interested in killing its own people, but more concerned about protecting the citizens.

He added that the efforts of the military in the fight against crude oil theft had been yielding positive results with the increase in the crude oil production of 1.6 million barrels per day.

Continue Reading

News

FG recovers N120bn from crime proceeds —Lai Mohammed

Published

on

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed

The Federal Government has said it had realised at least N120 billion as proceeds from criminal financial operations since the bill on Proceeds of Crime Recovery Management was signed into law earlier this year by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, made the disclosure at a news briefing where Minister of Environment presented the scorecard of the ministry under the Buhari administration in Abuja, yesterday.

READ ALSO:

Mohammed said:  “I have an update on the Proceeds of Crime (Recovery and Management) Act (POCA), 2022. In line with the new law, all relevant agencies of government have now opened ‘Confiscated and Forfeiture Properties Account with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.

“I can confirm that so far, the Federal Government has realised over N120 billion, among other currencies, from POCA. This money will be used to fund the completion of ongoing critical infrastructure projects in the country such as the Second Niger Bridge as well as Lagos-Ibadan and Abuja-Kano Expressways. We will continue to update you on this,” he added.

Vanguard

Continue Reading

Trending