Buhari and Fayose

By Kazeem Ugbodaga

Former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose has queried President Muhammadu Buhari to account for the $1 billion withdrawn from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to battle insecurity in the country.

However, P.M.NEWS found that the call may be superfluous as government rendered an account on 22 July.

Oblivious of this, Fayose, in series of tweets appeared to suggest that the money had been wasted, because of the rising killings and kidnappings being witnessed on daily basis.

“Nigerians should recall that I took a stand openly against withdrawal of the $1bn,” he said.

According to Fayose, 30 months after the $1bn was released, Nigerians, including soldiers and FG officials were complaining of no arms and ammunition to combat insecurity in the country.

“When in December 2017, FG took $1bn from the Excess Crude Account purportedly to buy arms to fight Boko Haram, I did say then that the money was to fund the 2019 Re-election of the APC candidates. Not many people suspected.”

On 22 July, the Buhari government in a statement by Garba Shehu, the SSA Media, explained how the money was spent.

In the first place, he said, the money was domiciled at the CBN and was never for once taken to the Ministry of Defence or the Office of National Security Adviser, like what happened in the Jonathan years.

Shehu, explained that $876.9million, as at July had been spent. A balance of $123,111,571.29 has remained unspent at the CBN.

“The record we have is that the Buhari administration paid $496,374,470 for a dozen Super Tucano fighter aircraft for the Air Force in a direct, government-to-government (no Contractors or Commission Agents) transaction with the government of the United States of America.

“They are due for delivery in 2020.

“Various other military procurements for critical equipment have been made. These are for the Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Navy, amounting to $380,513,958,71.

“These procurements include money for the purchase of Navy Lynx helicopters. Total amount spent so far: $876,888,428.71.

“The equipment paid for have due dates of delivery of between six months to two years.

“Balance of the money that is unspent as at today is $123,111,571.29.”

He said that the entire expenditure involved in the exercises was on the basis of government-to-government procurement.

“In cases where the Nigerian government dealt with equipment manufacturers, their home governments have in all cases given guarantees to the federal government.

“Again, it is important to stress that no contractors or commission agents have been involved in the procurements under discussion.

“All USD 1,000 million was domiciled in the Central Bank of Nigeria and to date, not a single dollar of it has been transferred to the Ministry of Defence or any other ministry, agency of government, individuals or political party office as was the norm under the PDP administration”, he said..