As a follow-up to the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation probe, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has summoned 20 senior directors and officials of the ministry. Some officials have already been questioned at the EFCC headquarters, and this development stems from a detailed investigation report and recommendations presented by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
Sources suggest that the probe has broadened to uncover financial improprieties since the ministry’s establishment in 2019. The scale of fraud appears extensive, spanning various projects and programs, transcending the transition from the immediate past administration into the new administration.
The collaboration between the EFCC and ICPC is expected to unveil more financial misconduct and malpractices perpetrated by civil servants during the Buhari administration. The ICPC’s interception and recovery of N50 billion from the humanitarian affairs ministry earlier underscored the prevalence of embezzlement attempts.
The ICPC’s chairman, Musa Aliyu, SAN, presented its investigation report to the EFCC chairman, Ola Olukoyede, to strengthen the synergy between the two agencies in the fight against corruption. The collaboration aims to reveal more financial misconduct and infractions within the ministry.
The ICPC report details the roles played by several officials in the attempted diversion of N50 billion belonging to the National Social Investment Programme Agency. This report is expected to assist the EFCC in its investigation of the suspended minister, Betta Edu, and other officials linked to financial improprieties.
Governors elected on the APC platform have urged Nigerians to await the findings of the anti-graft investigation rather than passing judgment on the suspended Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Betta Edu. The APC governors expressed unity and affirmed their support for President Bola Tinubu’s administration.
The ongoing investigations involve allegations against Betta Edu, ex-minister Sadiya Umar-Farouq, and Halima Shehu. Edu faces allegations of authorizing the transfer of N585 million into a private account, while Umar-Farouq is questioned over an alleged N37 billion money laundering. Shehu is under investigation for allegedly moving N44 billion NSIP funds without presidential approval.
The collaboration between the EFCC and ICPC, coupled with the ongoing investigation, aims to shed light on the alleged financial misconduct within the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, providing accountability and transparency in the process.