BPE officials diverted N2.5bn PHCN proceeds to buy properties -OAuGF
Office of the Auditor General of the Federation, OAuGF, on Monday, told the Senate Committee on Public Accounts how officials of Bureau of Public Enterprise, BPE, allegedly diverted N2.5 billion from proceeds of the defunct Power Holding Company, PHCN, to Aso Savings and Loans in order to buy properties.
This is contained in the report of the Auditor General of Federation, AuGF submitted to the Senate committee, chaired by Senator Mathew Urhoghide (PDP Edo South).
Senator Urhoghide, who was visibly angry over the alleged diversion of N2.5 billion to Aso Savings and Loans, asked the representative of Director General of BPE, Ignatius Ayewoh who is the Director of Finance and General Services.
But Ayewoh said the Bureau did not obtain any approval from the Debt Management Office, DMO, when the chairman asked him about the person that authorized the diversion.
“We did not have approval from DMO to pay N2.5billion from the proceeds of PHCN to Aso Savings and Loans,” he stressed.
Senator Urhoghide, however, accucsed the BPE representative of acting in collision with the Aso Savings and Loans .
The committee chairman further demanded for list of staff who benefited from the properties acquired from the Aso Savings and Loans and be submitted to the committee tomorrow (Wednesday), declaring that everything about the transaction was illegal.
Urhogbide said the committee is going to ask the federal government to recover the money in Aso Savings and Loans.
BPE in a written submission to the committee had said, “This was a loan guarantee, but a fund placement at five percent interest rate. It was used to negotiate a single digit interest rate to finance the Bureau’s staff Housing scheme.
“There is an approval from the Office of Accountant General of the Federation authorising the Bureau to establish a relationship with the organisation.
“Aso Savings and Loans has since in September 2015 not be able to implement the directive by BPE to remit deposit to TSA.
“A committee chaired by the Vice President is currently trying to resolve the issue with Aso Savings and Loans and about 16 MDAs are affected.
“Aso Savings and Loans Plc has offered the BPE some buildings and plots repayment of N70million monthly to defray the deposit with accrued interest.”
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