Senate faults transfer of forfeited assets to AGF office

• urges proper funding for all anti-graft agencies

The Senate Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes has faulted the policy directive which mandated the EFCC to transfer all final forfeited assets of crimes to the office of the Attorney General of the Federation for management.

Senator Abba Moro (PDP Benue South )who raised the issue during the budget defence anti-graft agency noted that it was wrong for the office of the Attorney General to be in possession of the forfeited assets of crimes.

He said the assets need to be disposed off for the government to raise money to finance the budget.

The Chairman of the EFCC who was represented by the Director of Finance, Gamma Joda Mohammed had told the committee that the EFCC acted in line with the policy directive issued since 2019 that all final forfeited assets should be transferred to the office of the Attorney General of the Federation for proper management.

In his remarks, the Chairman of the Committee on Anti- Corruption and Financial Crimes, Senator Sulaiman Kwari said the EFCC Bill on Asset Management currently before the National Assembly is aimed at addressing the abnormal in the management of the final forfeited assets from crimes.

The committee also raised concern about the poor funding of the EFCC saying that the Federal Government should not pay lip service to the fight against corruption in the country.

The Director of Finance of the Commission while defending the 2022 budget proposal said the total fund proposed for the agency in 2022 is N31. 3 billion of which N25.8 billion
Is earmarked for personnel cost, N3.6 billion for overhead while the sum of N 1.8 billion is for capital expenditure

The Director of Operations of EFCC, Mr Abdulkarim Chukkol who also spoke on the operation of the Commission, said EFCC only have 15 offices across the federation including the headquarters in Abuja.

The committee therefore pledged to jack up the Commission’s budget to enable it to execute its cure mandate.

Also, the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) headed by its Chairman, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye(SAN) defended the Commission’s budget before the committee.

Prof. Owasanoye said the total budget proposed for ICPC in 2022 is N12.9 billion of which N9.8 billion is for personnel cost, N1.8 billion while only N1.3 billion is for capital expenditure.

Another agency that appeared before the committee is Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) headed by Mr Tukur Modibo who complained bitterly about the N 350 million capital fund allocated to his agency in the 2022 budget.

Mr Modibo appealed to the Senate for an upward review of the allocation to enable the agency to carry out its mandate without any hindrance.

He also told the committee that the N4 billion was proposed for personnel while N1 billion is for overhead.

In his concluding remarks, the chairman of the committee noted that” some agencies are too important to be limited to envelop system if they must perform their mandates to the fullest.”

He therefore pledged that the committee will table the grievances of the anti-graft agencies to the leadership of the Senate for prompt action.


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