The Senate Public Accounts Committee on Wednesday gave the Ministry of Interior 24 hours to defend the N700 million collected from Service Wide Votes (SWV) otherwise known as the contingency budget for the monitoring of Ondo and Edo governorship elections.
Records from the Office of Accountant General of the Federation made available to the panel showed that the money was released in two batches; N400 million and N300 million for Ondo and Edo governorship elections, respectively.
The money was released to the ministry for logistic and operational support in respect of two elections.
The chairman of the committee, Senator Matthew Urhoghide (PDP, Edo), gave the directive when the ministry’s permanent secretary, Dr Shuaib Belgore, appeared before the panel.
Belgore told the committee that the N700 million would be accounted for by the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) because the ministry only requested the money on behalf of the security agency.
Dissatisfied with the defence, Urhoghide said NSCDC would only account for the money it received directly from Service Wide Votes and not through the supervising ministry.
“From our records, it is your ministry that will defend the expenditures not NSCDC. You have 24 hours to make your report available to us, we must get an explanation from you,” he said.