Termites have reportedly eaten up N17.128b expenditure evidence at the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF).
The development came as the management of NSITF came under scrutiny by the Senate Public Accounts Committee (SPAC).
According to the committee, it was discovered that the fund’s management had failed to present pertinent paperwork to support reported expenditures of in 2013.
However, termites are alleged to have destroyed some of the paperwork supporting the costs. In its 2018 audit report, the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation (OAuGF), which is currently being examined by the Senate panel chaired by Senator Matthew Urhoghide (Edo South), questioned the agency on the distributed sums without the proper supporting documentation.
The AuGF, in his report, claimed that between January and December 2013; the agency transferred a total of N17.158 billion from its Skye and First Bank accounts into a number of anonymous accounts . The accounts were held by both individuals and corporations.
Earlier, in its 2018 audit report, the OAuGF had raised 50 separate questions about potential financial misappropriation against the organization.
The AuGF’s query reads: “Management of NSITF, as shown in statements of account number 1750011691 with Skye Bank Plc; for the period 1st January, 2013 to 20th December, 2013; and statements of account number 2001754610 with First Bank Plc; for the period January 7, 2013 to February 28, 2013, transferred amounts totaling N17,158,883,034.69 to some persons and companies from these accounts.
“However, payment vouchers relating to the transfers together with their supporting documents were not provided for audit. Consequently, the purpose(s) for the transfers could not be authenticated.
“These are in violation of Financial Regulation 601 which states that all payment entries in the cashbook/accounts shall be vouched for on one of the prescribed treasury forms. Vouchers shall be made out in favour of the person or persons to whom the money is actually due.”
Accordingly, the Chairman of the Senate Committee, Urhoghide, had summoned NSITF’s past and present managements. This was to find out where the said N17.158 billion was transferred to between January and December 2013.
Meanwhile, it was noted that no representative of the past management was able to provide documentation for the purported transfers.
In his ruling, Urhoghide voiced concern about the situation. He also ordered both former and current NSITF management members to make a second appearance before the panel on September 22, 2022; with all essential documentation pertaining to the transactions.