Senate Demands Resignation Of SGF Over IDPs’ Funds Mismanagement

The Senate has urged the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal to resign immediately.

Babachir Lawal

The legislative chamber reached the decision after receiving the report of a committee created to probe corruption in the management of funds for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the North-East.

The committee, which is chaired by Senator Shehu Sani, submitted its report on Wednesday, December 14.

The Senate accuses the Presidential Initiative for the North East, PINE of being corrupt and unaccountable following its inability to account for about N2.5 billion released for capital projects in the region.

The Upper Chamber also says contract awarded by the Presidential Initiative contravened several parts of the public procurement acts.

PINE was set up by the Buhari administration to address the humanitarian crisis and rebuilding infrastructure in the Northeastern region of the country.

The Senate accused the SGF of allegedly owning one of the companies awarded contracts in the rehabilitation of the Northeast.

It says Lawal resigned as a director in Sept. 2016 but still a signatory to the company’s account and as a result is demanding his immediate resignation and prosecution.

The lawmakers had set up the committee following a UN report, which said that almost a quarter of a million children in parts of Borno state are suffering from severe malnutrition.

The Northeast region was formerly under the control of the Islamist sect, Boko Haram.

The United Nations warned that Nigeria’s economic slowdown, compounded by Boko Haram attacks could mean 5.5 million people are in need of food aid in the northeast region by September.

The Nigerian Government had responded to that report by ordering the police to arrest and make an example of government official’s accused of stealing food aid intended for the IDPs.

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