FG monetises N336m vehicle allowances for Obasanjo, Atiku, Jonathan, IBB, others

Indications emerged, yesterday, that former Heads of State and former presidents got N40 million from the Federal Government last year.

The money was for them to purchase vechicles, paid in line with government’s monetisation policy.

The beneficiaries  were: President Goodluck Jonathan; General Yakubu Gowon;  President Olusegun Obasanjo; Alhaji Shehu Shagari; General Ibrahim Babangida and General Abdulsalami Abubakar. 

These details were contained in a financial report submitted by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, to the House of Representatives Committee on Inter-governmental Affairs, yesterday.

The N40 million was monetised, out of N210 million proposed for procurement of vehicles for seven former president and Heads of State in the  2017 budget.

Mustapha appeared before the committee as part of the 2017/2018 budget defence for the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF). 

Aside from the N170 million yet to be disbursed to the beneficiaries, an additional N96 million was proposed for procurement of vehicles in the 2018 budget, for the select group.

In the case of former Vice Presidents and Chief of General Staff, such as former Vice-President Namadi Sambo,  Waziri Atiku Abubakar, N210 million was proposed for procurement of vehicles for them, with N120.090 million released in 2017.

This was just as a balance of N90 million was proposed under the same sub-head  in estimates of the 2018 budget submitted to the National Assembly for consideration.

The proposed procurements were part of the N2.492 billion and N2.492 billion capital expenditure for 2017 and 2018, respectively.

In separate reactions to the presentation, the lawmakers queried the proposed N18.360 million for purchase of 27 laptop computer (Mac Book) in 2018, the N,995,190,118 allocated for the purchase of security equipment, N64 million for purchase of monitoring trucks, N316 million for purchase of motor vehicles, N124 million for four 18-seater buses and two 30- seater buses.

Mustapha explained that the Mac Book computers would be used  in the Council Chambers as the federal government seeks to improve on e-compliance.

The sum of N130 million was also proposed for procurement of two Toyota Land Cruiser-Prado Jeeps, N65.551 million for ambulance and clinic equipment, while N170 million was proposed for Independence/Democracy Day celebrations, this year.

Other proposed expenditure for 2018 include: N1.734 billion for political appointees, N760.277 million for honorarium and sitting allowances, N133.421 million for welfare packages, N88.65 million for purchase of office furniture and fittings, N18.36 million for purchase of computers and N456.64 million for computer software acquisition. 

For the support/maintainance of e-Council document, N116.64 was allocated. There is also N60 million for upgrade and turnaround maintenance of the Council Chambers Conference system, another N30 million radio frequency identification device system (RFIC), N35 million for expansion of local area network/OSGF website upgrade and N40 million for socio-economic impact studies challenges/solutions.

However, the 2017 budget document  of the OSGF showed that out of N55 million proposed for upgrading and turn around maintenance of Council Chambers System, N54,400,500 hadbeen released, leaving only N599,500 balance.

From the N35 million proposed for 1 Xerox D125 Heavy Duty Photocopy Machine to enhance timely production of Council memoranda, N34,938,750 has been released, leaving a balance of N61,250 only.

This was just as out of the total N20.800 million proposed for the procurement of 52 Mac Book computers in 2017,  N20.790 million has been released while from N170 million proposed for the 2017 Independence/Democracy Day celebration, N138 million has been released.