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Kogi’s Senator, Isa, heads Senate committee to investigate Buhari’s financial practices, Anchor Borrowers Program


Kogi’s Senator, Isa, heads Senate committee to investigate Buhari’s financial practices, Anchor Borrowers Program

The Senate announced on Monday the establishment of an Ad-Hoc Committee to look into the financial practices, particularly the Anchor Borrowers Program, carried out by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) during the former administration of Muhammadu Buhari. President of the Senate, Godswill Akpabio, alongside other senators, presided over the inauguration of the committee.

The decision to investigate these programs was sparked by concerns about the distribution of funds to state governments, manufacturers, aviation, banks, and excess funding in the power sector, which has contributed to the nation’s growing debt profile.

The Senate made these decisions following a thorough discussion on the report from the National Assembly Joint Committees on Banking, Insurance, and other Financial Institutions (BIOFI), Finance, National Planning, Agriculture, and Appropriation, as part of efforts to examine the state of the economy.

In an extensive debate in early February, Senator Adamu Aliero had argued that some state governors, including some retired ones in the Senate, were beneficiaries of N18bn as shock absorbers under the Ways and Means since 2015.

The debate had led to some lawmakers suggesting that a special committee be set up to scrutinise the N30trn intervention disbursements (some of which were grants) and ways to mop them up.

In his inaugural address to the Adhoc Committee chaired by Senator ISAH Jibrin representing Kogi East, Sen. Akpabio charged the committee to leave no stone unturned in its investigation expected to span six weeks.

He enjoined members of the committee to set aside personal and partisan interests, focus on the task at hand, and approach their responsibilities with utmost balance, devotion and impartiality.

Recognising the sensitivity of the investigation at hand, Sen. Akpabio reminded them to constantly engage with relevant stakeholders and consultants, to provide invaluable insights while maintaining open lines of communication with the executive and the public, but disclosing no aspect of the report until the task is concluded.

The inauguration was attended by the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy; Wale Edun, the CBN Governor; Olayemi Cardoso, Accountant General of the Federation; Oluwatoyin Madein,  Auditor-General of the Federation; Shaakaa Chira,  Director General, Debt Management Office; Patience Oniha, beneficiary Ministries Departments and Agencies, Institutions, States, Local Governments, and others.

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