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PUBLIC PRRESENTATION OF COMMITTEE REPORT STAFF VERIFICATION &SCREENING

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PUBLIC PRRESENTATION OF COMMITTEE REPORT
SET UP BY HIS EXCELLENCY, THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR OF KOGI STATE ALHAJI YAHAYA BELLO
TO
VALIDATETHE STAFF VERIFICATION &SCREENING COMMITTEE’SREPORT

His Excellency
AlhajiYahaya Bello
Executive Governor, Kogi State
Government House
Lokoja.

Dear Sir,

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

It is indeed a great day in the life of this administration and esteem honour to stand before you to present our report on the successful completion of the validation of the report of the staff verification and screening exercise conducted for Kogi State workers.

Your Excellency sir, upon assumption of office and in keeping to your promise to reform and reposition the state civil service for quality services and delivery of dividend of democracy, which has for long time eluded the state for over 16 years, the Staff Verification & Screening Committee was inaugurated on February 22, 2016. The purpose of setting up of the Staff Verification & Screening Committee, among other things is to ascertain the true position of the State and Local Governments workforce with a view to optimize human & financial resources of the State and to enable His Excellency to properly plan for the holistic development of the State even with the meagre resources at the disposal of the Government.

Following the outcry generated by the activities of the Staff Verification & Screening Committee, under the Chairmanship of General Paul OlusholaOkutimo, which was almost frustrating and sabotaging the entire screening process, Your Excellency changed the leadership of the Staff Verification & Screening Committee and bowed to the pressure of Nigerian Labour Congressand its affiliates bodies, under the leadership of Comrade Johnson Onuh Edoka to have their representative as the Chairman of the Staff Verification & Screening Committee, hence Dr. Jerry Agbaji was presented by Comrade Johnson Onuh Ekoka (NLC Chairman) to His Excellency as the preferred Chairman of the reshuffled Committee.

In the same vein, Your Excellency set up the Backup Committee on May 24, 2016 with the mandate to work with the Staff Verification & Screening Committee in order to restore discipline, integrity and transparency to the screening exercise.

Subsequently, the Staff Verification & Screening Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr.. Jerry Agbaji submitted their report to Your Excellency on June 22, 2016. In the report submitted to Your Excellency, almost all the representatives of NLC affiliate unions refused to sign the report they prepared. Those that refused to sign the report are;

Thereafter, the Backup Committee was upgraded by His Excellency to Staff Screening & Validation Committee with the mandate to review and authenticate the report submitted by the Staff Screening and Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji.

We are glad to state that we have successfully completed the task as contained in your mandate. It is our honour to present our report to Your Excellency as follows;

OUR APPROACH & METHODOLOGY
To effectively carry out your mandate as directed sir, we adopted the following approaches and methodologies;

We obtained the report of the Staff Screening and Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji with a view to subjecting it to appropriate review and validation.
We entertained complains from stakeholders and concern individuals with a view to adDr.essing issues that generated the initial public outcry.
We interfaced with Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) to validate Bank account numbers provided by employees of the state and local governments.
We made direct contact by way of phone calls and physical interaction with civil servants and suspected ghost workers on the nominal payroll list.
We recruited adhoc staff to sort the mixed-up or muddled up Employee Biodata Form and capturing of same into the data base.
We engaged a Consultant to subject our findings/observations to professional review and validation using sophisticated intelligence techniques.
We obtained anonymous information through the public complaint box established immediately after the completion of the field work.

SOURCE OF INFORMATION
This exercise relied on information and documents obtained from various sources, which the findings/observations and conclusion arrived at in this report were based. The sources of information include, but not limited to, the following;

The Staff Screening and Verification Committee Report under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji
The Employee Biodata Form, submitted by all civil servant in the State.
Anonymous or whistle blowers who volunteered information
Various documents attached to the Employee Biodata Forms e.g. Letter of Appointment, Letter of Promotion, Bank Statements, Academic Certificates etc.
Independent Report obtained from NIBSS.

At this juncture Your Excellency Sir, it will interest you to note that

OUR FINDINGS & OBSERVATIONS
Further to the receipt of your mandate sir and the adoption of the approaches and methodologies highlighted above, the following are our findings and observations.

From The Review of Work Done by Staff Screening & Verification Committee
The work of the Staff Screening and Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji, which was the primary source document for our exercise was categories into two namely;
Field work
Desk review.

The Field work was extensive and thorough; the integrity of data tested could be adjudged from our assessment to be very high. However, the second aspect of the Staff Screening & Verification Committee work, which is desk review was marred with substantial fraud and high level of irregularities. It appears that these irregularities were deliberate effort by some enemies of the state who may have infiltrated the screening committee to manipulate and embarrass the State Government and, by extension, His Excellency for their selfish interest.

Below are some of the identified atrocities:

Employee Biodata Forms Not Captured
It was discovered that the Staff Screening & Verification Committee failed to capture a total of 14,947 Employee Biodata Forms. These civil servants represent those with or without issues, which were not captured in their report. These categories of staff were unjustly excluded from the screened staff list. The summary of those affected is as provided below;

By implication, a total of 14,947 civil servants spread across the State would have been unjustly declared as Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries without their data captured in the submitted Committee’s Report under the leadership of Dr. Jerry Agbaji.

As it can be seen in the table above, out of the 14,947 Staff Verification Forms not captured by the Staff Verification & Screening Committeeunder the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji, 10,101 passed the verification and screening exercise and we have now included them in the cleared list and their salaries are about to be processed for payment.

Employee Biodata Forms Mixed-Upand Muddled up
It is interesting to note Your Excellency sir, that some of the State and Local Governments Staff Verification Forms were deliberately mixed-up and muddled up.

The objective of mixing up the Staff verification Formsby the Staff Verification & Screening Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji cannot be understood. The only plausible explanation for this action could have been to cause apprehension among the civil servants across the State.

In this category, a total of 1,016 Employee Biodata Forms were found to be mixed-up and muddled up in MDAs different from where the civil servant is currently working. See the summary below:

It took over 20 days by about 20 ad-hoc staff to sort and rearrange these forms by MDAs and the respective LGAs.

Wrong Treatment/Classificationand Clearing of Staff with irregularities
Civil Servants across the MDAs and LGAs numbering 1,060 were found to be wrongly classified or wrongly cleared in the report submitted by the Staff Verification & Screening Committeeunder the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji.

In the course of our review, we noted that some staff with various degrees of irregularities in their employments records wereincluded in the cleared list while others with no irregularities were includedand classified as having problem in the unclear list.

Find below the summary of those in this category;

The implication of the issues highlighted in the above table is that some civil servants (state and local governments) who are Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries or who are illegally Drawing money from the Government coffers have been cleared while genuine workers were unjustly included in the unclear list in the report submitted by the Staff Screening and Verification Committee under the leadership of Dr. Jerry Agbaji.

Violation of the Screening Guidelines& Procedures
It was observed with dismay in the course of validating and authenticating the entire exercise as directed by His Excellency, that the Staff Screening & Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji grossly violated the screening guideline and template, which was generally agreed and approved by the two parties that is (Government and Organised labour). For example, the Staff Screening & Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji screened & cleared a total of 346 appointments made in 2015 by Kogi State University, Anyigba and 176 appointments made in 2015 &2016 by Kogi State College of Education, Ankpa. This action of the Staff Screening & Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji is a violation of the Screening Guideline& Procedure. The summary is as provided below;

Irregular Signature & Deliberate Refusal to Sign Employee Biodata Forms
We noted that some of the Employee Biodata Forms were not signed by members of the Staff Screening & Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji and where the forms were signed, the signatures were deliberately made to be irregular so as to make it difficult to trace the member of the Committee that signs.

Abnormal Employment
Our validation and authentication of the exercise revealed cases of abnormal employment into the civil service. The individuals who are beneficiaries of this abnormality have been drawing salaries & allowances albeit illegally from the State and Local Governments. Find below our findings;

Employment before the creation of Kogi state (SUBEB)
Yahaya Adama & Others
These people were employed by SUBEB in 1986 as a Teacher in Ofu LGA. Please note that Kogi State was created in August 27, 1991. The letter head used for their employment between 1983 to 1991 was that of Kogi State Government, Lokoja. How this was possible is still a mystery. See the summary of those in this category in the table below;

Employment by Catholic Dioceses of Idah
Adejo Theresa was employed in 1988 by Catholic Dioceses of Idah and posted to Idah LGA on GL 5/1 and now on GL 14/5. How the Catholic Dioceses of Idah could employ for Idah LGA is a mystery and a fraud that needs to be unearthed.

Employment of Underage
NefisatuAbubakar& Others
Nefisatu was said to have been employed in July 9, 2008 by Ankpa LGEA whereas she was born on May 7, 1996. By implication she was employed at the age of 12 years, when ordinarily she was supposed to be in Primary School. She has no primary school certificate, finished SSCE in June 2014 by her records available with us.

Diaspora Employees
These are set of people who claimed to be in the employment of Kogi State Government, being paid salaries but are residing outside Kogi state and even outside the country. We described these categories of people as Diaspora Workers because almost all withdrawals of the proceeds of their illegal salaries are made in locations outside Kogi State for several years. See example of employees in this category in the table below;

Non Existing Workers
These are faceless and voiceless people. They don’t respond to calls, you can’t see them; they are living in the world beyond and received salary from the state and local governments. This practice exists across the All the Local Government Areas of the State. See examples of employee in this category in the table below;

Double and Multiple Employments
These are wicked people and officers within the State who Dr.aw salaries in multiple from either both State, Local & Federal Government as well as private companies. The numbers of employees in the employment of State & Local Governments in this category are 114.

This discovery was revealed through interfacing with NIBSS where the BVN of the individuals concerns revealed they were earning salaries from more than one source. The summary is as provided below;

Others with BVN Related Irregularities
There are 19,195 Employees of the State and Local Governments with BVN related irregularities. The summary of the irregularities is as provided below;

Employees without BVN

Employees with Invalid (Incorrect) BVN

Employees with wrong Bank Account number

Please note that these categories of staff have not been subjected to our intelligence test to determine their correct status.

Over-bloated LGEA Work Force
The entire State LGEA Offices are over bloated with numerous redundant senior officers ranging from GL12 to GL 17 who had left classroom for offices thereby leaving the school without experience teachers as at today. These officers in question were employed as professional class teachers but decided to abandon their teaching profession to LGEA Offices where there was no work to do.

Impersonation
These are set of dubious and notorious people who are claiming the employment benefits (salary & allowances) of some deceased civil servants of the State and Local Governments for as far back as 10 years. Unfortunately, no single civil servant has raised alarm to put a stop to this practice, hence aiding and abetting the financial crime.

A case in point is that of Joseph Inikpi, an employee of Dekina Local Government who we confirmed to be late. Our findings further revealed that upon the death of Joseph Inikpi, a woman inherited her identity and began to enjoy her entitlements. This first woman subsequently transferred the benefit of late Inikpi to another woman who is currently again enjoying the benefits of late Inikpi.

The first woman (now in Abuja) who inherited late Inikpi identity is the one with her Passport photograph on the Employee Biodata Form whereas the second woman (now in Dekina) currently enjoying the benefits of late Inikpi is the one whose phone number is on the Employee Biodata Form.

LIMITATION OF THE EXERCISE
This exercise was not without its challenges and limitations. Though with the support of His Excellency, the logistic and administrative challenges were satisfactorily addressed. Thank you, Sir.

It is important to mention at this juncture Your Excellency sir that the cleared list which the Staff Screening & Validation Committee came up with is NOT 100% clean as the cleared list might still harbour some potential illegal and fraudulent salary earners. The reason why the cleared list is not 100% clean cannot be overemphasised and it is because of the limitations associated with this exercise.

The following are the limitations that could not be resolved to enable us come up with 100% clean cleared list;

The coverage is wide but the time allocated for this exercise is very short.
We relied largely on information contained in the Employee Biodata Forms which were collated by people we do not have control over.
Information obtained from anonymous and whistle blower about illegal salary earners on the payroll of state or local governments and who are at the same time in the employment of private or public limited liability companies in Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna etc. are yet to be independently validated.
Background checks including certificate verification has not been done which could have enabled the Screening & Validation Committee to further clean up the system.
The inability of the Screening & Validation Committee to review the civil servants in the employment of the Judiciary in the state as they did not take part in the screening exercise.

SUBSEQUENT EVENT REVIEW
Your Excellency sir, this report should not be seen as a final exercise, rather the screening and validation should continue until the State and Local Governments payroll are completely cleaned up.

This is premised on the revelation from additional forensic checks which we carried out and we discovered few cases of Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries e.g. in SUBEB, State House of Assembly etc.

BENEFITS OF THE SCREENING EXERCISE
Your Excellency sir, there is no doubt that your vision to embark on a comprehensive Staff Verification & Screening exercise has open a new page in the history of Kogi State. Following the completion of the first phase of the Staff Verification & Screening exercise, the benefits among others will include;

Prompt and regular payment of civil servant salary
It has restored confidence to the state civil service system as there used to be the notion of some people being untouchable within the system because they are connected to god father and earning salary even though they are not working in the State.
The morale of the entire workforce in the state will be boosted, thereby enhancing productivity across the civil service system.
Funds saved from the elimination of Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries’ from the payroll will be channelled to infrastructural development of the state.
Kogi State will become a model for other States to emulate.

CONCLUSION
This exercise could not have come at a better time than now sir, as it further reinforce one of the pillars of your New Direction Agenda which is zero tolerance for corruption and fraudulent practices and respect for rule of law.

It is a common knowledge that the civil service is the engine room of every democratic government; performance of any system largely depends on the health of the engine. Thus, when the engine is healthy the system is healthy and if engine is faulty the system will malfunction. Unfortunately, the civil service being the undisputed engine has been bedevilled by a lot of challenges in the state, ranging from absence of conducive working environment, non-payment of salaries, allowances and bonuses etc. Therefore, the decision of His Excellency to make the welfare of the state civil servant a priority will no doubt galvanise the entire workforce behind your New Direction Agenda.

Your Excellency sir, this exercise which you initiated will not only go a long way to clean up the system but will reposition the civil service for efficient service delivery. It will also lay the foundation to make Kogi State Civil Service the bedrock of your administration.

We highlight below, the summary of the conclusion of this screening exercise inaugurated by Your Excellency as follows;

Cleared Workforce As At July 24, 2016
Following the conclusion of the mandate given to us by His Excellency, we were able to authenticate and validate 63,870 as the cleared workforce of the State and Local Governments. The Summary of the confirmed and validated workforce is as provided below;

Established Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries As At July 24, 2016
Your Excellency sir, as at the time of inaugurating the Staff Screening and Verification Committee in February 22, 2016, the total staff on the nominal payroll of the State (State MDAs and Local Governments) was 88, 973with monthly wage bills of N5,809,578,703.72.

However, after the conclusion of this exercise on July 24, 2016, the cleared and validated workforce was 63,870. Thus, a total number of 18,211(88,973 – 63,870) represent the Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries that has been drawing salaries fraudulently from the State and Local Government finances. The estimated current monthly wage bills of cleared and validated workforce after the conclusion of our report was N4,443,070,644.23.

Thus, with this exercise, the Government (State & Local) will be able to save the sum of N1,365,608,059.49on a monthly basis hitherto being earned by these categories of Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries. These savings will amount toN16,387,296,713.88 per annum.

Looking backward to the last 13 years of the previous administrations in the State, the Government (State & Local) has lost a colossal sum ofN213,034,857,280.44 to this categories of Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries.

The negative effect of this avoidable monumental losses on the socio-economic development of the State can better be imagined. The over N213,034,857,280.44 that was fraudulently diverted into private pockets if properly channelled into the development of the State would have turned the socio-economic landscape of the State to the admiration of the whole nation and by extension the continent of Africa.

It is also important to reemphasis that the Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries represent 20% (18,211/88,973) of the State and Local Governments workforce as at December 31, 2015 while the SAVINGS represent about 24%(N1,365,608,059.49/N5,809,578,703.72) of the total wage bill as at December 31, 2015.

Employee that did not complete Biodata Form or Did not Present Themselves For Screening

From the table above, 9,757GHOST WORKERS/UNINTENDED BENEFICIARIES did not complete the Employee Biodata Form and failed to present themselves for screening.

Other Categories of Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries

From table a and b above, a total number of 18,211 Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries have been earning salary illegally from the purse of the State and Local Governments over the years. They are therefore declared as GHOST WORKERS/UNINTENDED BENEFICIARIES accordingly.

Your Excellency sir, it is important to reemphasis that this exercise should be a continuous one until the state and local government’s payroll is 100% clean.

On a related note, we will like to use this medium to appeal to all lovers of Kogi State with useful information about those collecting salaries and allowances from the coffers of any MDA or LGA in Kogi State but not working in Kogi State (Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries) to forward such information to us. A Public Complaint & Suggestion Box has been opened in the State Secretariat for this purpose.

RECOMMENDATION
To sustain His Excellency New Direction Agenda, the following are hereby recommended for your approval and subsequent implementation;

Computerise the Payroll System of the State, Local Government workforce& Pensioners
The automation of the Payroll System will eliminate all forms of manipulations being presently experience and sanitize the process. Appropriate checks and balances will be built into the payroll system that will among other things require minimum of two level of authorisation where additional staff is to be introduced into the payroll.

Centralising Payroll Processing
We propose that the State MDA’s salary payment should be centralised in the Payroll Department under the Office of the Accountant General of the State while the salary payment for Local Governments should be centralised under the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs. The local government salary process should be incorporated into the monthly Joint Account & Allocation Committee. Upon determining each LGAs allocation and credited into their respective Bank Accounts, the payroll schedules with the supporting details will be approved by the approving LGAs authority and salary payments uploaded.

Biometric for All State& Local Governments Staff
In line with best practices and the State Government New Direction Agenda of His Excellency anchors on zero tolerance for fraud, the need to introduce biometric capturing for all the state and local governments workforce cannot be overemphasised.

The captured biometric information will be linked with the Integrated Personnel &Payroll Software (IPPS), thus making it difficult if not impossible to introduce Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries into the payroll system.

Computerised Staff Identity Card with Biometric Access Control Devices
Closely related to (c) above, upon the biometric capturing of the details of all the state and local governments workforce, computerised identity card with biometric Access Control devices should be provided for all staff.

The Access Control devices will be configured to be active in the location of the employees. Thus, the access control devices which will required finger print will complement the manual attendance register and will be used to monitor employee punctuality and also reveal truancy or absenteeism.

Verification of Academic and Professional Certificates
The benefit of this exercise will not be maximised if the verification of academic and professional certificates presented by all the cleared civil servants upon which their employment is predicated are not verified to be genuine or otherwise.

This process will require independent verification of the genuineness of academic and professional certificates in the records file of each of the cleared staff.

Introduction of Pre Disbursement Audit for Salary Payment
Introducing pre disbursement audit will further add to the integrity of the payroll processing. Report template will be designed which will serve as source documents to be validated by the Auditors.

We propose that the State Auditor General should anchor the pre disbursement for State MDA’s while the Auditor General for Local Governments to anchor the pre disbursement audit for Local Governments. To ensure there is no delay, turn-around time with tolerable numbers of days to be specified as might be appropriate.

Centralised The Deduction and Remittance of the Personal Income Tax (PAYE) of the State and Local Governments Employees in line with Personal Income Tax Acts (PITA) 2011 as amended
In the face of dwindling revenue allocation from the Federal Account Allocation Committee (FAAC), state governments across the federation are refocusing on how to enhance their internally generated revenue (IGR).

Thus, as they say goes ‘charity begins at home’ case of in-house loss of revenue can be easily mitigated with the centralization of payroll as the PAYE will be deducted and remitted at source. This will no doubt enhance the state government revenue base. At present, most Local Governments and State MDAs deduct but does not remit the PAYE deducted to the State Board of Internal Revenue.

Aiding & Abetting criminality of the Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries
Almost all the isolated Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries have valid employment letters and their Screening forms were endorsed by their departmental heads, knowing fully well that these categorise of people are fraudulently drawing salaries from the state and local governments purse.

The names of the senior officers who signed their employment letters, who has been appraising and promoting them and those that signed their Employee Biodata Forms should be compiled and disciplined appropriately.

Possible Aiding and Abetting by Accounting Officers of MDAs & DLG of LGAs
All Accounting Officers of MDAs and DLGs of Local Governments where cases of Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries were discovered should be invited to explain their level of involvement in the recruitments and payments of salaries to these individuals over the years. Where they could not provide appropriate response, such officers should be handed over to the State Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice for appropriate action.

Abolition of Cash as Mode of Salary Payment
All forms of payment of salary by CASH should be outlawed in all MDA’s and Local Governments across the state going forward.

Discourage redeployment of Teachers to LGEA Offices
The State Government should put structure in place to discourage future redeployment of trained teachers to Local Government Educational Authority offices except where it is extremely necessary. Where such is to be done, it must be approved by Local Government Service Commission.

This recommendation is premised on the dearth of School Teachers in our schools whereas trained teachers employed to impact knowledge in schools have been redeployed from the schools and being idles in the LGEA offices.

Automation of Pensioners& Treatment of Retiring Civil Servant
Automating payroll processing for both state and local governments will enable online real-time transition of retiring civil servant from active civil service on the payroll to Pensioners. The computation of the Pensioners monthly pension and gratuity will be computed by the system with minimum or no human intervention.

On a related note, dead civil servant must be paid their six months’ death burial expenses to avoid continuous payment of such peoples’ salaries.

Treatment of Study Leave with Pay
Your Excellency sir, going forward, prolongs study leave with pay for civil servant where there is NO specific duration of study based on Admission Letter (whether for local or foreign studies) should be stopped.

This is because our findings and feedback from Whistle Blower confirmed that some fraudulent individual within the system use the opportunity of those purported to be on study leave to continue to prepare and pay illegal salaries.

Your Excellency sir, kindly direct the Head of Service (HOS) to compile the names of all civil servants on study leave in the State and submit same to your office not later than 14 days from the date of this report for further action.

Duration of Tenure of Accountants in MDAs, Treasurers and cashiers of LGAs
To engender probity and accountability, civil servant seconded from the State Accountant General Office as Accountants in MDA’s must not be allowed to stay more than maximum of two years, this should be applicable to Treasurers and Cashiers in LGAs.

Recovery & Prosecution of indicted individuals
The names of all civil servants indicted for being involved in financial frauds in this exercise should be forwarded to the State Attorney General & Commissioner of Justice for appropriate legal actions including disengagement from the state and local government workforce, recovery of misappropriated state and local governments funds as well as possible prosecution as the case may be.

Inaugurating of Staff Complaint Committee
As expected, exercise of this nature will result into complain, thus, setting up of a committee to entertain complaints from staff will go a long way to assuage the feelings of anyone who think he or she has a case.

Thank you Your Excellency, sir.

Members of the Staff Screening & Validation Committee;

…………………………………….
Alhaji Yakubu Yusuf Okala FCA, MBA, BSC
The State Auditor General

…………………………………….
Alhaji Ahmed Usman Ododo ACA, CPFA, NIM, BSC
The Auditor General for Local Governments

…..…………………………………
Alhaji IDr.is Ashiru Asiwaju ACA, BSC
The Honourable Commissioner, Finance
………………………………………
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Group clears Bauchi Governor of Corruption allegation

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Group clears Bauchi Governor of
Corruption allegation

From Ali Sara, Bauchi

Corruption allegations against the Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir are false, blatant lies being orchestrated by his political enemies, the Bauchi State Coalition Against Financial Crimes and Injustice (BACAFCI) has said.

The National Chairman of BACAFCI Mallam Bibi Dogo stated this on Sunday while fielding questions from newsmen in Bauchi in reaction to the recent petition  filed by alleged stakeholders from Bauchi State.
The group had accused the Governor of corruptly enriching himself and mal administration in the State as reported in some media.
Dogo indicated that the coalition received a copy of the petition which it has studied but found no tangible evidence but blatant lies with the sole aim of bringing the government to disrepute out of envy of his track records and successes.

Dogo who brought dozens of documents in defense of Governor Bala said the anti graft group BACAFCI cleared Bala on all the allegations after they studied the petitions filed by the socalled stakeholders before the Economic Financial Crime Commission EFCC.
Dogo explained further that the allegations of loans for the Purchase of 3.5bn official vehicles for the Political office holders are unfounded as all due processes were followed in the award of the contract.
He said the contract for their purchase was approved by the State House of Assembly through House resolution via a letter sent by the government and duly signed by the clerk of the House Umar Yusuf Gital with reference number BASHA/POL/S/13/VOL.XIX/203 dated 17/July/2019.
He said  the contract was awarded to an indigene of the State after it followed the normal scrutiny where certificate of no objection was issued to the company before it was awarded the contract.
Dogo observed that from their findings, all cars were supplied and put to use by the beneficiaries in the best interest of the State.

He said the allegations that Governor Bala is a director in one of the companies which Bauchi Government patronized is not true as the Governor had resigned his position in the company on 1st May 2019 adding that he was not a Governor at that time because he had not taken the oath of office.
He said their findings were confirmed through Corporate Affairs Commission CAC form no 51180 on the particulars of Directors.

The Chairman also indicated that allegations of awarding road contracts, Building of Palaces, Workshops, assistance to pilgrims, supply of School Uniforms to out of School children, children meals by the government, are all genuine projects that everyone with sincere mind can see.
“Where anyone is in doubt he can go to the relevant government agencies to confirm and verify.
On the issue of School Uniforms and meals for out of school children he said the contract for the supply of uniforms was awarded to the indigenes of the State after due process and the uniforms was supplied.
Dogo indicated that the project was aimed at reducing the number of out of School children, while the Workshop was carried out in the best interest of the state at minimal cost. 

Even the issue of ghost workers, he pointed out that it was Governor Bala who held a public hearing with all stake holders on the issue he is working hard to bring sanity to the system to free some resources and employ more people in to the state Civil Service. 

He said the petitioners were either ignorant of how government operates or it was born outof malice.
“They just decided to paint the governor black due to the large number of physical projects he has execute that has developed the state.

Bibi Dogo said many of the allegations are not directly linked to the Governor but some Civil Servants whom the petitioners didn’t care to accused but the Governor that is making effort to rebuild the State through the provision of genuine infrastructures.

He advised them to always cross check their facts and offer only constructive criticisms not blatant lies.

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Lawan seeks Pakistan support in capacity building for Nigeria’s Defence Industry

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Lawan seeks Pakistan support in capacity building for Nigeria’s Defence Industry

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan has urged Pakistan to aid Nigeria in the capacity building of her Defence Industry.

Lawan made the call on Friday while receiving in audience a delegation of the Senate of Pakistan which visited him to seek Nigeria’s support for the candidature of the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate for the Presidency of the Inter-Parliamentary Union(IPU).

The Senate President thanked Pakistan for its assistance in the area of training and supply of weapons to Nigeria Armed Forces in the fight against insurgency and other security challenges.
In his words,
“But one area that I think we need to sustain collaboration and partnership is in the area of helping Nigeria to build our Defence Industry.

“We started together in the 70s. For some reasons, we are still struggling to get stronger in the area of manufacturing or producing our needed defence weapons.

“But you have gone higher. We need to learn a lot from you in that respect.

“We have the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria located in Kaduna. They are still working hard to see how they can start producing the kind of weapons that we need in Nigeria.
“It’s going to take a while but I believe that you will graciously help us build the capacity of the people working in that place,” Lawan said.

The Senate President said the friendship between Pakistan and Nigeria which dated back to Nigeria’s Independence in 1960 had transformed into brotherhood.

“In all international fora, Pakistan and Nigeria have always been on the same side. Pakistan has been quite supportive of Nigeria in all ramifications.

“Presently, we do a lot together for our security especially the Armed Forces. You also help us with some of the weapons that we need in fighting the insurgency. We appreciate that and we hope that this kind of relationship and brotherhood will continue,” Lawan said

On the primary reason for the visit, the Senate President said the issue of the candidature of the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate, Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani for the presidency of IPU “is like one of us running for that office.”

“We will give him the support that he needs from us and if we can go beyond what we can offer as an institution to other areas including the African jurisdiction, we will do so, trying to talk to as many of our colleagues in other jurisdiction within the African region, to see if we can get them on board as well.

“But he is eminently qualified. He’s vastly experienced and Pakistan has been quite prominent and visible in the activities of IPU.

“What we require is reforming IPU to make it more robust and vibrant and also provide opportunity for supporting the various chapters across the globe. And I believe that with his experience and expertise, he will be able to do that and for us he has no problem. He has our support.”

Earlier, the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed who led the delegation said the mission was basically to seek the support of Nigeria’s Senate for the candidacy of the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate, for the presidency of IPU.

“The election is scheduled to hold in the first week of November. We feel that Nigeria’s support will be very critical and because Nigeria is a very important player in the international scenes and in particular with reference to Africa.

“It is in that spirit that we have come personally to solicit your support. And we hope that, God’s willing if we are successful, we will be voice, not just for Asia/Pacific, but the voice of Africa and democratic and civilised community of nation’s,” Sayed said.

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Works and Housing ministry gets lion share of capital expenditure at N404b in 2021 budget

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Works and Housing ministry gets lion share of capital expenditure at N404b in 2021 budget


President Muhammadu Buhari in his budget proposal to the joint session of the national Assembly Thursday has said that the works and Housing Ministry got the lion share of N404b for capital expenditure among other ministries.
The allocation he said is in line with his submission that capital expenditure in 2021 remains focused on the completion of as many ongoing projects as possible, rather than the commencement of new ones.
The president pointed out that, capital allocation to the Works and Housing sector is to facilitate the completion of several critical projects in 2021.
The works and Housing ministry was followed by that of Transportation with N256 billion in terms of heighrachy of importance.
The allocation Buhari said is line with his commitment to investing in Transportation Infrastructure.
According to him, the ministry of defence was allocated N121 billion in capital expenditure while
Power got N198 billion (inclusive of N150 billion for the Power Sector Recovery Plan).
For the ministry of Education N127 billion in capital was earmarked as another N70b was set aside for Universal Basic Education.

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Other key capital expenditures of note are
Water Resources withN153 billion, Agriculture and Rural Development with N110 billion, mknistry of Health N132 billion with
Zonal Intervention Projects gettingN100 billion.
Others are ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment which got N51 billion while Niger Delta Development Commission was earmarked N64 billion.
According to President Buhari the 2021 capital budget is N1.15 trillion higher than the 2020 provision of N2.69 trillion adding that at 29 percent of aggregate expenditure, the provision moves closer to this Administration’s policy target of 30 percent.

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