PDP demands immediate sack of Betta Edu over alleged looting of N44bn

By Moses Okorie

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has called for the immediate sack and prosecution of the embattled Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Dr. Betta Edu over the alleged looting of N44 billion National Social Investment Programme Agency, NSIPA, fund, including the N585.2 million audaciously diverted by her to a private account.

In a statement issued by the national publicity secretary of the PPD, Debo Ologunagba on Sunday, the exposed fraud in the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs is just a tip of the iceberg of the unprecedented treasury looting, unbridled stealing and plundering of resources going on in the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led All Progressives Congress, APC, administration which has practically brought the nation’s economy to its knees.

He said, “Is it not tragic and heartbreaking that a Minister entrusted with public funds to support millions of poor Nigerians who have been impoverished by the APC, turned around to divert hundreds of millions of naira meant for the wellbeing of the poor?

* Betta Edu and President Tinubu

“The continuing stay of Betta Edu as Minister is therefore provocative and amounts to stealing from a people and daring them to do their worst. It further confirms our Party’s position that the Tinubu-led APC government is a cesspit of corruption; a haven for thieves and treasury looters.

“Nigerians were shocked by reports of how Betta Edu and the suspended National Coordinator of NSIPA, Halima Shehu allegedly engaged in brazen looting of billions of Naira while Nigerians who the funds are meant for are deprived and abandoned to excruciating hardship and misery.

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“Equally disheartening is the reports of how Betta Edu allegedly directed the transfer of the N585.2 million NSIPA money into the private account of one of her fronts in clear violation of Chapter 7, Section 713 of Nigeria’s Financial Regulations, 2009 which expressly prohibits the payment of public money into a private account”.

The opposition PDP said for emphasis, Section 713 of Nigeria’s Financial Regulations, 2009 provides that “Personal money shall in no circumstances be paid into a government bank account, nor shall any public money be paid into a private bank account. An officer who pays public money into a private account is deemed to have done so with a fraudulent intention”.

The PDP added that the apparent fraudulent intention by Betta Edu in diverting public funds into a private account; an action which was appropriately declared illegal by the Accountant General of the Federation, Oluwatoyin Madein, is consistent with APC’s character and proclivity for plundering of public resources.

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