The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission(ICPC) has declared that the N13.59trillion 2021 budget was padded by the various Ministries , Departments and Agencies ( MDAs) , with duplicated projects worth a total of N300 billion .
The Anti-graf agency also disclosed that projects duplication worth about N100billion were also inserted into the 2022 budget by some MDAs aside N49.9billion tracked as salary for ghost workers between January and June this year .
Startling revelations on the intercepted corrupt plans by the affected MDAs , were made by ICPC Chairman , Professor Bolaji Owasanoye during interface with the Senate Committee on Finance in preparation for the 2023 budget.
According to the ICPC boss , the N300billion duplicated projects in the 2021 budget and N100billion in the 2022 budget were tracked through thorough scrutinization carried out on approved projects for the various MDAs .
“N300billion would have been wasted by the Federal government on duplicated projects inserted into the 2021 budget and N100billion for same purpose in the current fiscal year if not tracked and intercepted by ICPC .
“The same pre-emptive move , saved the country from spending N49.9billion for salaries of ghost workers put on fictitious pay roll by the fraudulent MDAs between January and June this year .
“Names of MDAs involved in projects duplications running into intercepted billions of Naira and fictitious pay rolls , are available and will be forwarded to the committee .
” The good thing about the pre-emptive moves made by us is that monies for the fraudulent acts were prevented from being released to the affected MDAs and it is gratifying that the Finance Ministry and Accountant General Office cooperated with us ” he said .
He advised relevant committees of the National Assembly to be on the look out for such projects duplication in the proposed N19.76trillion 2023 budget .
“From our own end , detection of such projects are done by verifying their locations and names , upon which we tell the appropriate authorities not to release wrongly budgetted monies for them “, he added .
Impressed by the submission, the Committee through its Chairman, Senator Solomon Olamilekan Adeola ( APC Lagos West ) , said the operational cost of the agency will be increased from N1.8billion in the coming 2023 budget.
“This committee is impressed by the proactive ways your commission is adopting in the fight against corruption .
” Your submissions clearly shown that all hope is not lost for our dear country as far as fighting corruption is concerned .
” Your operational cost which is N1.8billion will be increased as required for more proactive measures against corrupt practices across the various MDAs”, he said .
The finance committee’s sitting continues on Friday.
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