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Reps move to monitor COVID-19 funds, demand details of FG’s donations to states, NCDC

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THE House of Representatives has asked Ahmed Idris, the Accountant-General of the federation (AGF) to provide the details of all the funds donated by the Federal Government to the states of the federation, the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) and the relevant ministries to fight the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak in the country.

The House of Representatives made the demand on Wednesday when the AGF appeared before the House Committee on Public Accounts investigating the financial status of the Presidential Task Force (PTF), chaired by Busayo Oluwole Oke.

The Committee said it would also write formally to Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN),to demand the details of all the lodgements and disbursement of COVID-19 pandemic funds by the Federal Government.

While asking the AGF to provide details of N22.1 billion so far donated by public-spirited individuals and organisations to the government, the Public Accounts Committee also demanded for details of how much he had so far transferred to the PTF on COVID-19.

In his response, Idris explained to the Committee that the government opened a special account at the CBN where the donations were lodged, adding that the bank would later provide the documents requested.

“There was a special account we opened with the CBN and that was what we borrowed from to meet the needs of this emergency,” he said.

Idris further told the Committee that there was a total donation of N139,439,544.38 received by the Federal Government from the donations by the 109 Senators and 360 members of the House adding that another N300 million came from a philanthropist from Kano State.

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But the Committee maintained that the AGF must provide the details at its next sitting  slated for Monday, June 15.

It will be recalled President Muhammadu Buhari had in May approved the opening of five different accounts for COVID-19-related donations.

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