December 3, 2020

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Report Exposes N2 Billion Fraud In Rural Electrification Projects

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An audit report of the Nigerian government has exposed financial irregularities of more than N2 billion in the electrification projects carried out by the Rural Electrification Agency, an agency of the federal government.

According to the 2017 Annual Report from the Office of the Auditor-General for the Federation, which is still the latest report, the Rural Electrification Agency has to provide answers on how it spent a total of N2.7 billion across the country on electrification projects.

The agency was created in 2006 by the federal government as part of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act.

The audit report, obtained by SaharaReporters, revealed that “the agency reflected the sum of N2,781,572,787.58 (Two billion, seven hundred and eighty-one million, five hundred and seven-two thousand, seven hundred and eighty-seven naira, fifty-eight kobo) as a balance for work in progress.

“Some of the projects that constituted this figure were electrification projects funded by the government through the agency which had been completed and handed over to the various Distribution Companies (DISCOs).

“It would therefore be improper to continue to retain them in books since they are no longer under its control and possession. Requests for breakdown and details of the above figure were not granted.”

The report recommended that the REA managing director must be directed to correct the grey areas in the finances of the agency.

“In his response, the Managing Director stated that the agency was advised to treat the items as work in progress pending further directives from the Accountant-General of the Federation,” the report stated.

“The Managing Director, in consultation with the Office of the Accountant General, is, therefore, required to ensure proper treatment of the work-in-progress to correct the errors and misstatements in the financial statements.”

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