The Federal Government has ordered an investigation into the alleged missing N2.67bn meant for feeding school pupils during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Recall that the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, had raised the alarm N2.67 billion released to 104 Unity Colleges during the lockdown were in the accounts of private individuals.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, ordered the probe in a statement signed on Tuesday by the Director, Press and Public Relations, of the ministry, Ben Goong, after meeting with all the principals of the 104 colleges in the country.
According to the statement, the principals claimed that the payments were diverted to private accounts following difficulties encountered by farmers, local food vendors and market women who do not have Tax Identification Numbers, TIN, PENCOM and other requirements to access the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System, GIFMIS, platform.
The principals added that, that was the reason the fund was transferred to officers recognized by the platform to receive such payments and disburse same to food vendors.
“The investigation is to establish the veracity of the claims to ensure that there is no diversion of public funds or misappropriation of same.
“To this end, the ministry in line with the Minister’s directive is to collaborate effectively with officials of the ICPC to unearth the facts as well as find a lasting solution to the payment system for meal subsidies that will ensure accountability and transparency,” the statement added.