N35b Unaccounted For By Head Of Service, Say Reps

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What happened to over N35 billion sent to the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation from the Service Wide Vote by the Budget Office from 2004 to 2012?

Why were these funds not in the records of the OHSF? Were the funds received by the OHSF and if not, where did the money go?

Why could the OHSF only account for the receipt of N17.6 billion out of almost N53 billion?

These were the questions the members of the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts laboured yesterday to find answers to, while investigating the disbursement of Service Wide Votes from 2004 to 2012.

Members of the Solomon Olamilekan- Adeola headed committee were surprised yesterday when the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation, OHSF could not account for a total of over N35 billion received from the Budget Office of the Federation over a period of nine years.

While the Permanent Secretary of the OHSF, Mr. Remi Adelakun claimed they received only N17.6 billion over the period, the Budget Office discounted the assertion by reeling out records of the disbursement of the funds from the Service Wide Votes from 2004 to 2012 and received by the Office of the Head of Service.

According to the Budget Office, the OHSF received well over N52 billion within the period under investigation.

The Budget Office, which was represented by Mr. David Eze, said in 2004, the OHSF received N2.7 billion, N9.8 million in 2005, N701.7 million in 2006, N896.3m in 2007, N5.3b in 2008, N612.9m, another N70m in 2009 and N17.6b in 2010.

Other releases, according to the Budget Office, are N13.6b in 2011 and N8.5b in 2012.

The Chairman of the Committee, Solomon Adeola-Olamilekan, noted that the OHSF documents only refer to the N17.6b it received in 2010. He said based on the figures given by the Budget Office, there’s a disparity of almost N35 billion and requested for the documents for the rest of the years in question.

However, following the inability of the OHSF to satisfactorily answer the queries of the committee over Service Wide Votes disbursement, the Chairman of the committee advised the OHSF to return to its archives and if necessary reconcile its records with the Budget Office and return on March 27 to the committee with the relevant records.

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