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The House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts has expressed worry over the whopping sum of N475 billion allegedly spent on the N-Power scheme between 2016 and 2020.
Though the agency indicated that the sum of N474,961,312,112.42 was expended on N-Power since inception, its Assistant Director of Administration, Nsikak Okon who spoke on behalf of the N-Power National Coordinator at the investigative hearing of the Committee disclosed that the sum of N421,525,909,355 was spent so far.
Okon noted that 200,000 young Nigerians between the ages of 18 to 35 were employed in the first batch of the scheme which started in June 2016, while payment commenced in December 2016.
He said a total of 300,000 participated in the second batch which commenced in June 2017, thereby bringing the total to 500,000 spread across 774 Local Government Areas of the country.
When asked to give an account of the amount expended so far, Okon however observed that “a typographical error on the last page of the submission, it’s supposed to be N421,575,909,355.
“What happens is that if you look at October 2016, it’s supposed to have terminated October to December 2016 but we had it rolled to 2016 total giving us 56 billion”.
According to him, in the year 2016, a total sum of N3.356 billion was spent, adding that the subtotal was not stated in the documents presented to the Committee.
When asked to present the list of all the beneficiaries, the N-Power official noted that he had printed the list of beneficiaries from three States, including Abia, Adamawa, and Akwa Ibom while others were being awaited.
Okon added that the agency had written to the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (oAGF) on the over 11,000 N-Power beneficiaries who have not been paid since January 2020.
Worried by the inconsistency in the documents presented to the Committee and the verbal presentation made by the N-Power National Coordinator, the Committee Chairman, Oke who argued that the N-Power was out to “ambush the Parliament” requested director to present the total for the 2016 financial year.
Ruling on the presentations made by various National Coordinators of the National Social Investment Programme (NSIPs), Oke declared that all the members of the House will go to their various constituencies to verify the details of all the beneficiaries of various schemes with a view to ensuring accountability and demanded details of the salaries of the N-Power officials.