The House of Representatives’ Committee on Public Accounts, on Tuesday, grilled the Managing Director of the National Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF), Michael Akabogu, over the transfer of a total of N17,158, 883,034.69 to persons and companies without payment vouchers and other supporting documents provided for audit.
The Office of the Auditor-General of Federation, in an audit query issued against the NSITF, said the transactions were carried out in 2013.
The query was contained in the 2018 report of the AUGF which listed 50 queries against the NSITF.
According to the report, vouchers shall be made out in favour of the person or persons to whom the money is actually due and under no circumstances shall a cheque be raised, or cash paid for services for which a voucher has not been raised.
The report said, “Audit observed from the fund’s Statements of Account No. 1750011691 with Skye bank Plc, for the period 1st January, 2013 to 20th December, 2013, and Statements of Account No. 2001754610 with First Bank Plc for the period 7th January, 2013 to 28th February, 2013, that amounts totalling N17,158,883,034.69 were transferred to some persons and companies from these accounts.
“However, payment vouchers relating to the transfers together with their supporting documents were not provided for audit. Consequently, the purpose(s) for the transfers could not be authenticated.”
The auditor-general said where funds were transferred without adequate records, there may be the possibility of diversion of such funds for personal use.
The report recommended that the NSITF MD be required to account for the sum of N17,158,883,034.69, failing which the amount should be recovered and paid back to the Consolidated Revenue Fund and sanctions should apply.
Other queries against the fund in the 2018 report are the alleged diversion of N5.5bn to a commercial bank account not approved by the accountant-general and irregular payment of unapproved allowances to the tune of N1.87bn among others.