EFCC Uncovers Alleged Misappropriation of N12.4 Billion by REA MD and Top Officials

By Milcah Tanimu

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has revealed startling findings in its ongoing investigation into the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), uncovering alleged misappropriation of N12.4 billion, diversion of COVID-19 funds, and financial malpractices involving top officials, including the Managing Director (MD), Ahmad Salihijo Ahmad.

  1. Account Investigations: The EFCC traced 27 bank accounts linked to the suspended REA MD, who reportedly declared only two accounts to the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), raising suspicions of false asset declaration.
  2. Misappropriation of COVID-19 Funds: The agency is investigating the suspected diversion of N6 billion out of the N12.4 billion COVID-19 funds disbursed to REA. Allegations include non-execution, under-execution, and poor execution of contracts, contract splitting, overpayments, and fictitious payments.
  3. Financial Irregularities: The report highlights instances of contract splitting, unnecessary engagement of external consultants, non-compliance with procurement procedures, and unauthorized payments. Suspected funds diversion through fictitious projects, overpayments, and questionable contracts is also under scrutiny.
  4. Staff Involvement: Several REA staff members, including directors and account department personnel, are implicated in the misappropriation scheme. Payments totaling N1.2 billion were allegedly siphoned from REA’s accounts into personal bank accounts of staff members, with the involvement of the Director of Finance and Accounts.
  5. Asset Recovery: Over N200 million in cash and various assets, including properties and landed assets, have been recovered by the Special Investigation Team (SIT), Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
  6. Legal Ramifications: The EFCC’s findings suggest multiple violations, including criminal conspiracy, breach of trust, misappropriation of public funds, procurement fraud, and money laundering, with potential legal consequences for those involved.

The EFCC’s revelations shed light on systemic financial irregularities within the REA, underscoring the need for thorough investigations and accountability measures to address corruption in public institutions. The recovery of misappropriated funds and assets signifies a step towards justice and reinforces the commitment to combat graft in Nigeria’s governance systems.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *