Dr. Oluwatoyin Madein, the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF), has raised concerns over the ‘disbursement’ of N585,189,500.00 into a personal account.
In a widely circulated document personally signed by Dr. Betta Edu, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, she directed the disbursement of funds to Oniyelu Bridget Mojisola, as outlined in the directive sent to the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF).
The document further revealed that the disbursement of the N585.189 million grant, intended for vulnerable groups in Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Ogun, and Lagos states, was credited to Oniyelu’s account.
In response to the leaked document, Rasheed Zubair, Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the Minister, stated on Friday that the payment for the vulnerable group adhered to due process.
According to Zubair, the payment of the grant to the account of Bridget was because the fellow currently serves as the Project Accountant of Grants for Vulnerable Groups.
In response to the development, the AGF said she did not honour the request.
She said it was not her responsibility to make payments for projects and programmes on behalf of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
Madein position was contained in a statement on Saturday by the Director of Press, OAGF, Bawa Mokwa.
Mokwa quoted the AGF as saying that allocations were released to self-accounting MDAs in line with the budget and such MDAs were responsible for the implementation of their projects and payments for such projects.
The AGF explained that although her Office received the said request from the ministry, it did not carry out the payment, adding that the ministry was advised on the appropriate steps to take in making such payments in line with the established payment procedure.
“The AGF noted that in such situations, payments are usually processed by the affected Ministries as self-accounting entities and no bulk payment is supposed to be made to an individual’s account in the name of Project Accountant.
“She added that such payment should be sent to the beneficiaries through their verified bank accounts.
“Dr. Madein reiterated her determination to uphold the principles of accountability and transparency in the management of public finances. She advised MDAs to always ensure that the requisite steps are taken in carrying out financial transactions,” the statement said.