Governors Set Up Committee To Probe Nigeria’s Ecological Fund


SAN FRANCISCO, April 27, (THEWILL) – Governors of the 36 states on Thursday set up a committee to audit the country's Ecological Fund. Membership of the committee includes governors of Oyo, Borno, Imo, Akwa Ibom, Kaduna and Anambra states as well as the ministers of finance and environment.

This development is part of the resolution of the meeting of the National Economic Council, NEC, which held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja chaired by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo.

The Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano made this known to State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, disclosing that the balance in the Ecological Fund stood at N33.6bn.

He stated that the Accountant General of the Federation, while briefing the Council, revealed that the balance in the Nation's Natural Resources Fund stood at N70.9 billion.

The Anambra governor disclosed that the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, in her presentation, told the NEC that the balance in the country's excess crude account as at April 26, 2017 stood at $2.2 billion dollars.

He also said the Finance minister told the meeting that the newly established efficiency unit at the ministry has so far saved Nigeria N17bn, adding that she advised the governors to also look at the possibility of establishing the unit in their states.

Also speaking, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State said the governors decided to audit the fund because although states have not collected any money since the coming into office of President Muhammadu Buhari almost two years ago, the balance appears to be dwindling.

“No state has collected money from the ecological funds in the last one or two years and we notice that the balance is going down. Somebody must be touching it,” he said.

The National Security Adviser, NSA, Babagana Monguno, who also spoke at the briefing, said he gave a report of the security situation in the country to the council.

He said his briefing focused on the activities of cattle rustlers, herdsmen and farmers clashes and criminal elements.

The NSA said he informed that council that security agencies in the country are currently engaged “in general nationwide crackdown on all criminal elements”.