The Independent Corrupt Practices and other offences Commission said it has uncovered how eight Universities and Teaching Hospitals padded their personnel budget with over N7 billion.
The revelation was contained in the presentation of the Chairman of the ICPC, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, at a public fora.
The fora, which took place in December, 2019, had President Muhammadu Buhari in attendance.
Owasanoye said in the paper while addressing President Buhari: “When you inaugurated the current Board of ICPC, you directed that we scale up our prevention mandate because prevention is better than cure.
“In this regard, we widened the use of our powers under section 6(b-d) of our enabling law to scrutinize the practices, systems and procedures of MDAs in respect of personnel cost from 2017 to July 2019 and 2018 capital development fund.
“Part of our preliminary findings, the summary of which are included in a visual narrative in your folders, revealed gross abuse of personnel budget and inflation or padding of the nominal roll.
“As at the time we went to press we had covered about 300 MDAs and the amount inflated was about N12 billio.
“As at today, your Excellency, we have discovered additional N6 billion, making a total of N18.624 billion restrained by ICPC.
“The exercise is still ongoing but we can confidently report that culprit MDAs are mostly academic and health institutions.
“For example preliminary findings show the following: University of Benin Teaching Hospital N1.1 billion; Federal Medical Center, Bayelsa, N915 million; Nnamdi Azikwe University, N907 million; University of Jos, N896 million; University College Hospital, Ibadan, N701 million; University of Benin Teaching Hospital, N1.1 billion; Usman Dan Fodio University, N636 million; and University of Ibadan, N558 million.
“These institutions and all those implicated will be given the opportunity to explain themselves.
“However, while investigations are on to confirm any credible explanations they may have, we have alerted the Minister of Finance of our findings and appropriate steps are being taken to ensure that implicated MDAs will not be able to spend the excess built into their personnel budget.
“Let me note with regret sir that in the 2017-2018 fiscal year, the balances recorded for personnel were wrongfully utilised by MDAs for other purposes due to lack of pro-activity by late enforcement and related agencies.
“That sum amounted to N18.39 billion.”