How AGF Malami’s Ministry Spent ₦35Million On Virtual Conference In 2019

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The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami reportedly approved 35million in 2019 for officials of his Ministry to attend a virtual conference.

Details of the enormous expenses were revealed in audit documents from the desk of the Auditor-General of the Federation, Aghughu Adolphus, Sahara Reporters understands.

According to the reports, Malami and his staff had at the time raised the huge sum in 12 vouchers ahead of the conference.

The document which was signed by Adolphus further disclosed that one of the vouchers with No. Cap/014/19 dated 24/4/19 amounted to the sum of  ₦30million.

The said amount was reportedly raised as a cash advance to an undisclosed officer of the Ministry of Justice. Adolphus noted that the retirement papers of the money revealed the conference was a virtual meeting, in the 2019 financial year.

According to Sahara Reporters, Adolphus noted that the remaining amount of the ₦35million was raised to cover air tickets, boot camp registration, servicing of monthly meetings, workshop fees, and conferences.

According to the audit report, the virtual conference was consist of officers mainly from the South-South states of the country, while other participants were from different agencies.

Adolphus revealed further that receipts for retirement from hotels were altered at the date columns such as the Le Meridien Hotel and Golf Resort in Uyo for ₦13million, Ogbolosing Transport Company Nig. Ltd. for car hiring amounting to ₦160,000 with no destinations and MC Print Ventures for ₦60,000.

All of these, the Auditor-General said, raised doubts as to the genuineness of the retirement particulars.

The sum of ₦11.9million was reportedly dispensed to 184 officers all from the South-South states for their transportation while an additional ₦8.3million was paid to them as accommodation subsidy.

Picking fault on the expenses by the AGF Malami ministry, the Auditor-General said the payments “contravened extant rules on DTAs of public officers in the civil service, and the above payments were made as if all the officers are on the same grade levels to collect the same amounts in terms of distance and DTAs.”

The Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary of the Justice Ministry has been directed to give reasons for payment of allowances for a conference that was held virtually and payment to officers of other agencies.

The directive also asked for detailed accountability for the sum of ₦35.7million and transferred from the capital vote to finance overhead expenditure.

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