The Presidency on Monday in Abuja released further details on how one billion dollars approved by the National Economic Council (NEC) and removed from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to address security challenges was spent.
The Peoples Democratic Party in a statement on Sunday asked Buhari to explain to Nigerians what his administration had spent the one billion dollars drawn from the ECA in 2017 on, which was meant to address the nation’s security challenges.
However, Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, in a statement in Abuja on Sunday night, said “this unverifiable allegation’’ clearly indicated that the PDP was suffering from socio emotional distress.
Shehu, who pledged to provide more details on the issue on Monday, explained that the N876.9million already spent from the money domiciled at the Central Bank of Nigeria.
According to him, a balance of 123,111,571.29 dollars has remained unspent at the CBN.
He said: “Here is as much detail as we can provide at this time concerning the USD 1,000 Million from Excess Crude Account which withdrawal was authorised by the National Economic Council.
“The record we have is that the Buhari administration paid 496,374,470 dollars for a dozen Super Tucano fighter aircraft for the Air Force in a direct, government-to-government (no Contractors or Commission Agents) transaction with the government of the U.S. They are due for delivery in 2020.
“Various other military procurements for critical equipment have been made. These are for the Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Navy, amounting to 380,513,958,71 dollars.
“These procurements include money for the purchase of Navy Lynx helicopters. Total amount spent so far: 876,888,428.71 dollars.The equipment paid for have due dates of delivery of between six months to two years.
“Balance of the money that is unspent as at today is 123,111,571.29 dollars.”
He said that the entire expenditure involved in these exercises was on the basis of government-to-government procurement.
“In cases where the Nigerian government dealt with equipment manufacturers, their home governments have in all cases given guarantees to the federal government.
“Again, it is important to stress that no contractors or commission agents have been involved in the procurements under discussion.
“All 1,000 million dollars was domiciled in the Central Bank of Nigeria and to date, not a single Dollar of it has been transferred to the Ministry of Defence or any other ministry, agency of government, individuals or political party office as was the norm under the PDP administration.
“We note that the PDP made so much of a report claiming that the National Security Adviser, NSA had declared the entire amount of 1,000 million dollars as missing.
“The NSA will not have said this. I’am sure he has the correct story to tell. Without approval of end-user certification as issued by his office, no arms can lawfully enter Nigeria.
“In these days of fake news, citizens including political parties pretending to the role opposition parties must be careful about the reports they work with,’’ he said.(NAN)