Senate queries power ministry over N7bn | Dailytrust

Senate queries power ministry over N7bn

Senate plenary
Senate plenary

The senate has queried the Ministry of Power for allegedly spending N7 billion without appropriation by the National Assembly.

The query was contained in the 2015 report of the Auditor General of the Federation submitted to the Senate Committee on Public Accounts.

The committee, chaired by Senator Matthew Urhoghide, wondered how N7 billion appeared in the ministry’s account at a time when the 2015 budget had not been passed, while the account for 2014 was already closed.

The lawmakers observed that there was no evidence that such money was budgeted for in respect of hydropower transmission in either 2014 or 2015 fiscal years.

The query read in part: “The sum of N7 billion was received by the Ministry of Power in January, 2015, as shown in the accounts.

“This fund was spread into four commercial banks under the Account name: Hydropower Transmission Project.

“The budget for 2015 was not yet passed as at the time this money was received by the ministry in January, 2015, while the account for the year 2014 was already closed as at 31st December, 2014.

“It was also observed that there was no evidence that such money was budgeted for in respect of the Hydropower Transmission Project in either 2014 or 2015 fiscal years of the ministry’s Appropriation Act.”

But the Ministry of Power, in a written response, said: “The Federal Government released the money under special intervention fund to the ministry for the funding of Hydroelectric Power Project.

“The fund was released as special warrant and therefore was outside of the ministry’s approved budget.

“The Office of the Accountant General of the Federation approved project accounts for the fund in four different banks.”

 

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