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Budget office paid four MDA’s N19bn without approval – Senate


The Senate has asked the Budget Office of the Federation to refund the sum of N19bn the agency disbursed to four unnamed Ministries Department and Agencies without the approval of the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning.

The Senate had last October commenced an investigation into the alleged illegal payment of N19bn to four unnamed federal agencies by the Budget Office.

The Senate Public Accounts Committee chaired by Senator Mathew Urhoghide noted that the Budget Office did not present the letter it claimed to have written to the office of the Auditor General requesting details.

The Budget Office of the Federation in its response to the query claimed that it had written the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation requesting details for the four MDAs without response.

Due to the alleged failure of the budget office to present an approval for the payment of N19bn to the four MDAs, the Senate adopted the report of the Senate Public Accounts Committee on the matter asking for a refund of N19bn to the Nation’s purse.

The query is in the 2016 report of the Auditor General of the Federation which was submitted to the Senate for consideration.

The query by the Auditor General read in part, “Four MDAs were paid the sum of N19bn from the Service Wide Vote without the approval of the Honorable Minister of Finance, some of the payments were made on a purported verbal directive from the Director General.

“This act is against the financial Regulation 301 and 302 which state that ‘recurrent  expenditure is paid from the CRF and no expenditure may be incurred except on the authority of a warrant issued by the Minister of Finance.”

It added, “Given the above, it is difficult to accept the payment to the MDAs as proper and legitimate charges against the public funds.

“The Director General should provide evidence of approval from the Minister of Finance for these expenditures or recover the sum of N19bn from the benefiting MDAs.”

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