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Senate to probe Buhari, Emefiele over N30trn Ways and Means  FULL LIST: AFCON 2025 preliminary draw

The Senate, on Tuesday, resolved to probe the N30tn Ways and Means spent by former President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government which according to it, was recklessly spent.

It further stated that reckless spending of the overdraft collected from the Central Bank of Nigeria under Godwin Emefiele largely accounted for food and security crises currently facing the country.

The Red Chamber then resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee,  to carry out an investigation on what the N30tn Ways and Means were spent on by the immediate past government since details of such spending were not made available to the National Assembly.

The ad-hoc committee which will be constituted on Wednesday, will also probe the N10tn expended on the Anchor Borrowers Scheme, the $2.4bn forex transaction out of $7bn obligation made for that purpose as well as other intervention programmes.

Senate’s resolutions on planned investigations followed consideration of report of its joint Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, Finance, National Planning, Agriculture and Appropriation on State of the Economy after interactive sessions with the Federal Government’s economic management team .

The report consideration in plenary on Tuesday, was stormy with accusations and counter accusations by senators on why and how the N22.7tn Ways and Means was passed by the 9th Senate in May 2023 and additional N7.2tn passed on December 30, 2023 by the 10th Senate.

Specifically , the Whip of the Senate , Senator Ali Ndume (APC Borno South), in his contribution , blamed the Senate for approving the request without details from  Buhari.

Ndume said, “When the N22.7trillion Ways and Means approval request was brought before the 9th Senate, I insisted that details of spendings made with it , should be provided before approval but the Senate then went ahead and approve it .”

However, the Deputy Senate President, Jibrin Barau, said the decision taken then  was a collective one with caveat that the executive should provide details later, which was however not provided .

In his defence, the former Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, claimed that the Ways and Means was in the past and urged the Senate to focus on the present.

Lawan said, “ All of those is in the past, we must focus on the present which is the fact that people are hungry and they are crying. That’s what we should focus on.”

The Senate President,  Godswill Akpabio,  in his remarks said, as recommended by the committee , and supported by most of the Senators,  thorough probe must be carried out on the N22.7tn Ways and Means approved in May 2023 by the 9th Senate which later increased to N30tn , with passage of the N7.2trillion accrued interest forwarded for passage in the December last year .

Akpabio said, “The food and security crises confronting the nation now are traceable to the way and manner the said Ways and Means was given, collected and spent .

“Details of such spendings must be submitted for required scrutiny and possible remedies because what Nigerians want now is food on their table which must be given.”

He added, ” Other recommendations made by the committee on the need for thorough investigation of the N10trillion Anchor Borrowers programme,  and other intervention programmes running into billions of dollars must be investigated.

“But as rightly recommended by the joint committee, security agencies should as a matter of national urgency combat all forms of insecurity across the country for farmers to access their farms for required food production.”

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