ICPC Discovers N2.67bn Feeding Funds in Private Accounts

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Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, the chairman of Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission stated that the agency has discovered N2.67billion meant for the school feeding programme in private accounts.

Owasanoye revealed this on Monday, September 28, in Abuja during the second National Summit on Diminishing Corruption in the Public Sector, which was organised in collaboration with the Office of the Secretary of the Government of the Federation.

The summit was given the theme, ‘Together against corruption’ and it also included the launch of the National Ethics and Integrity Policy.

He explained that, “under the Open Treasury Portal review carried out between January and August 15, 2020, 72 out of 268 ministries, departments and agencies had cumulative infractions of N90m.

He affirmed that while 33 MDAs explained that N4.1bn was transferred to sub-Treasury Single Account, N4.2bn paid to individuals had no credible explanations.

He stated, “We observed that transfers to sub-TSA were to prevent disbursement from being monitored. Nevertheless, we discovered payments to some federal colleges for school feeding in the sum of N2.67bn during lockdown when the children are not in school, and some of the money ended up in personal accounts.”

The ICPC chairman made it known that under its 2020 constituency and executive projects tracking initiative, 722 projects with a threshold of N100m (490 ZIP and 232 executive) were tracked across 16 states.

He further said that the constituency tracking project of the agency compelled 59 contractors to return to sites, adding that the individuals handling the projects worth N2.25bn had abandoned the projects before the ICPC’s intervention.

He also added that over N2.5bn was discovered to have been diverted by a deceased worker with the ministry of agriculture, noting that 18 buildings, 12 business premises and 25 plots of land, were also recovered in the ministry.

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), who was at the national summit affirmed that his regime would not relent in its efforts to eradicate corruption in the country.

He reiterated his position that if an end is not put to corruption in the country, the threat will destroy the nation.