The Ministry of Finance, Budget, and National Planning is among 207 Ministries, Agencies, and Departments (MDAs) of the Federal Government and security agencies being probed over how they spent N4,94 trillion disbursed to them from the Service Wide Votes (SWV) in the last five years.
Others being quizzed by the Senate Public Accounts Committee (SPAC) include the State House, Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN), National Assembly, Economic, and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, and Head of Service of the Federation.
The Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), and the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board(JAMB) are also on the list of those being probed.
Their invitation is contained in a statement titled: “Special oversight on the expenditure of funds received from Service Wide Votes between 2017 and 2021” in Abuja. It was signed by the SPAC Chairman, Matthew Urhoghide, and Clerk, S. D. Umar.
The statement sighted at the weekend by The Nation showed that the probe began October 11. It is expected to end on December 13, 2022.
The SWV, also known as the Consolidated Revenue Fund Charge, is more or less the nation’s contingency fund embedded in annual budgets.
The committee noted in the statement that expenditure from the fund rose from N887 billion in 2017 to N1.93trillion in 2022.
It said the probe was “targeted at ensuring compliance with the provisions of the the1999 Constitution, Senate Standing Orders, Financial Regulations and other extant laws.”
The statement reads in part: “The Senate Public Accounts Committee in the exercise of its mandate of ensuring accountability and transparency in the use of the public funds embarked on a Special Oversight on Expenditure of Funds disbursed to MDAs from Service Wide Votes between January 2017 and December 2021.
The exercise aims to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Constitution, Senate Standing Orders, Financial Regulations, and other extant laws.
“It is also intended to review the rising trend in disbursement from the Service Wide Votes from about N887,008,900,486 in 2017 to about N1,930,782,172,797 in 2022.
“The submission from the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation showed that about N4,942,667,747,674.94 was released from the fund for the years under review.
“MDAs that received money from the Service Wide Votes were written to make submissions and subsequently appear before the Committee to defend their submissions.”
According to the committee, the State House received N73 billion from the (SWV); the CBN N4billion; EFCC, 5.91 billion; the National Assembly, N73, 9 billion; the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, N978 billion; the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, N68. 9 billion; AMCON, N8,4 billion and JAMB, N113. 81 billion.
The Ministry of Defence received N579.6 billion; Nigerian Army, N106. 9 billion; Nigerian Air Force, N14.5 billion; the Nigeria Police Force, N115. 95 billion Head of Service of the Federation, N16.81 billion; and Office of the Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, N403,96 billion;
Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on SDGs received N182.5 billion during the period; National Social Investment Programme, N44.51 billion, Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc (NBET), N209,98 billion; and Federal Ministry of Health, N30 billion.
The National Pension Commission got N431,79 billion; Presidential Amnesty Programme, N20,42 billion.
The committee enjoined all the MDAs and security agencies concerned to adhere strictly to the schedule for their appearance as it “will not entertain any request for rescheduling.”