A Senate investigation found that the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation illegally withdrew N665.8 billion from the Development of Natural Resources Fund and the Stabilization Fund and gave it to various government agencies as loans.
Funds were withdrawn from the fund between 2004 and 2015, according to the Red Chamber.
Senate Committee on Public Accounts report on the Federation Account contains the revelation.
Using an audit report by the Auditor-General for the Federation, the committee examined expenditures of federal government agencies from 2015-2018.
Before proceeding on annual recess, the panel presented its report on its six-month investigation of the Federation Account for 2015.
According to the Auditor General’s report on depletion of Special Funds, an amount totalling N455.8 billion had been withdrawn from the fund as loans to various beneficiaries between 2004 and 2015, contrary to the fund’s established objectives.
The Development of Natural Resources Fund provides financial resources to develop alternative mineral resources to oil and gas.
A total of N210.3 billion was also withdrawn from the Stabilization Fund as loans to various beneficiaries between 2004 and 2015, contrary to the established objectives of the fund.
Stabilization Fund’s purpose is to provide for economic downturns and unforeseen contingencies for the 36 states and Federal Capital Territory (FCT). Three levels of government are responsible for the stabilization fund.”
Former President Goodluck Jonathan and Vice President Namadi Sambo, whose entitlement was about N1.5 billion, received their payments on June 11, 2015.
Besides the N17.9 billion it received from Brown Rice Levy, Comprehensive Import Supervision Scheme (CISS) Pool Levy and Rice Levy, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) received approximately N20 billion from Development of Natural Resources Fund.
As part of its resolution, the Senate directed the Accountant-General of the Federation to ensure that the monies were refunded within 60 days.