Head of Service can’t account for N52bn votes

From Iheanacho Nwosu Abuja

The Office of the Head of Service of the Federation (OHSF) yesterday failed to account for the N52billion it received  from the Budget Office from the Service Wide Vote.

As a result, OHSF and Budget Office  officials openly disagreed and  caused a stir  at the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts which is investigating the handling of Service Wide Votes by ministries and agencies in the last nine  years.

Whereas the Permanent Secretary of the OHSF, Mr. Yemi Adelakun, told the lawmakers that  they got  only N17.6 billion over the period, the Budget Office  said the claims were unfounded. It gave  records of the disbursement of the funds from the Service Wide Votes from 2004 to 2012 as  received by the OHSF.

The Budget Office stated categorically that OHSF received well over N52 billion during the period.

According to the Budget Office, in 2004, the OHSF received N2.7 billion, N9.8 million in 2005, N701.7 million in 2006, N896.3million in 2007, N5.3billion in 2008, N612.9million plus another N70million in 2009, N17.6billion in 2010.

Other releases, according to the Budget Office, were N13.6billion in 2011 and N8.5billion in 2012. The revelation caused a stir during the session.

Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Solomon Adeola-Olamilekan, expressed surprise at the revelation which he said showed how the resources of the country were being managed.

He stated  that the OHSF documents only referred to the N17.6billion 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 OHSF’s inability to satisfactorily answer the queries of the committee over the Service Wide Votes disbursement, Hon Adeola-Olamilekan advised the OHSF to return to its archives and  if necessary reconcile its records with the Budget Office and return to the committee with the relevant records on March 27.

About Eze Chuks

Eze Chucks is an experienced media practitioner. He has worked for several news organisation.He has pioneered many online news website as an editor . He holds a B.Sc Economics degree and a masters degree email:editor@compassnewspaper.com.ng

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