Massive fraud hits Presidential Amnesty Office, Retired Army Major Fingered
Massive fraud costing tax-payers billions of naira has been uncovered in the 2017/2018 academic session deployment of amnesty beneficiaries to Nigerian universities by the Presidential Amnesty Office.
This has prompted a group, Niger Delta (ND) Watchdog Vanguard led by Mr. Horsefall Macpepple to raise dust over the matter. The group said if the matter is not redressed as quickly as possible, it will take the matter to the relevant quarters including the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
A committee set up by the new Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Prof Charles Dokubo, on assumption of office discovered that out of a total of 1,061 delegates/students that were deployed to 10 universities, only 314 delegates/students were found in the database of the Presidential Amnesty Programme with 747 names smuggled into the list.
The deployment of 747 non-beneficiaries will cost the government not less than N1, 053,270,000.00 annually which was not budgeted for, our checks revealed.
The committee discovered that the former Head of Education in the office, Major Kesiena Mowarin (rtd), during the hand over process by the former Coordinator of the programme, Gen Paul Boroh (rtd), was compiling names of vulnerable youths and sending them to universities without following due process.
Sources from the Amnesty Office confirmed that the new Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Prof Dokubo, on assumption of office set up various committees to look into the current position of all sectors of the Amnesty Programme. During the most recent deployment of Amnesty beneficiaries to Nigeria universities, 1,061 delegates were deployed to 10 Universities.
The committee setup to review this was to amongst other things find out how the 1,061 students were deployed to the various institutions:
1) Whether they are beneficiaries of the Presidential Amnesty Program (PAP),
2) Whether their deployment followed due process and any other information that will assist the office.
The requirements for consideration in the deployment of delegates/students to universities or training facilities in the reintegration component of the Amnesty Programme are:
- The delegate must be a beneficiary and must be in the database.
- There must be a budget for the deployment.
- The authorisation must be from the Special Adviser after management has given approval.
- The letter of Sponsorship/Scholarship award to each delegate/student must be signed by the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta & Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme and not by proxy.
In the case under review, none of the conditions stated above was met. The whole process was initiated and executed by the then Head of Education – Major Kesiena Mowarin Rtd.
As seen in the table below, a total of 1,061 students were deployed to 10 universities in Nigeria. None of the 1,061 students has a Scholarship Award letter duly signed by the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta & Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme. It was also observed that out of the 1,061 students deployed, only 314 students could be found in the database of the Presidential Amnesty Programme yet without a letter of sponsorship.
|2||BENSON IDAHOSA UNIVERSITY||26||3||23|
|3||EDWIN CLARK UNIVERSITY||112||35||77|
|8||MICHEAL &CECILIA IBRU UNIVERSITY||87||19||68|
|9||UNIVERSITY OF AFRICA||50||49||1|
|10||WESTERN DELTA UNIVERSITY||56||3||53|
The deployment of 747 non-beneficiaries will cost the government not less than N1, 053,270,000.00 annually which was not budgeted for.
It was also discovered that some of the universities were claimed to be charging far more than what was advertised and submitted to the National University Commission as at the time of the said deployment.
Investigation also showed that while some folios in the file that have to do with this process were removed, some files were totally missing. There was no record of the deployment in the Office of the Special Adviser on Niger Delta. The list of the said deployment was nowhere in the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta & Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme.
|SN||DESCRIPTION||NOT CLEARED||RATE||DURATION (YEARS)||TOTAL|
|1||AVERAGE TUITION||747||₦ 1,300,000.00||1||₦ 971,100,000.00|
|2||IN TRAINING ALLOWANCE (ITA)||747||₦ 70,000.00||1||₦ 52,290,000.00|
|3||BOOK ALLOWANCE||747||₦ 40,000.00||1||₦ 29,880,000.00|
|FOR ONE (1) YEAR||₦ 1,053,270,000.00|
|FOR FOUR (4) YEARS||₦ 4,213,080,000.00|