The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved additional N745.2 million for the procurement of more Field Forensic Auditors for the forensic audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, who briefed State House reporters after the meeting on Wednesday, said the approval brought the total number of field forensic auditors to 16.
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Akpabio said the FEC also approved the need to attach relevant investigative security agencies to each of the team to ensure transparency and make sure that the outcome was not just acceptable in Nigeria but in the international community.
He said: “The memo that was presented by the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs was a concluding memo on the procurement of Field Forensic Auditors for the forensic audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission and today the council approved additional forensic field auditors at a total sum of about N745.2 million.
“This brings to the total number of field forensic auditors to 16 in addition to the earlier approved Lead Forensic Auditors, messrs Olumiluwa Bashir and Co.
“These people are now going to be in charge of the nine states of the Niger Delta which has been divided into 16 lots.
“As I stated earlier, lead one is Ernst and Young for the headquarters.
“They will be undertaking the 19 years of audit and also bring out the organogram for restructuring of the NDDC for better performance in future.”
The FEC had earlier separately approved N318 million and N722.3 million for the ongoing exercise out of an estimated amount of N2.5 billion approved in 2019 by President Muhammadu Buhari for the forensic audit.
On August 26 this year, Akpabio attributed the delay in the completion of the forensic audit to the absence of budget and said that the task was now being financed through the Presidency since the NDDC budget had not been passed by the National Assembly.
The Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, while speaking on the outcome of the council meeting, said: “We considered in exco the award of contract for the procurement of 52 number operational Green Maria vehicle to facilitate effective operation in the Correctional Service as well as ease of movement of awaiting trial inmates from the Custodial centres, 247 of them in all to about 5022 courts in Nigeria.
“This is to complement what we have already acquired between 2016 and 2019 of about 451 Operational Green Maria vehicles.
“The objective is to ensure that the delay associated with trial of inmate is reduced if not eliminated.”