SERAP Calls For Probe On Missing $1 billion Arms Fund

 SERAP Calls For Probe On Missing $1 billion Arms Fund

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, and Transparency International have called for the probe of National Security Adviser Babagana Monguno’s allegation by anti-graft agencies.

Monguno, in an interview with the Hausa Service of the British Broadcasting Corporation, alleged that $1 billion arms funds went missing under the watch of the immediate-past service chiefs.

He added that neither the funds nor the weapons the ex-service chiefs were meant to buy could be traced, stressing that the President would soon order a probe into the matter. 

However, after the comment had gone viral in the news, the Presidency said no such funds were missing, adding that Monguno was misquoted. 

The NSA himself later denied the statement, saying he was misquoted. 

Allocations to Defence

Between 2015 and 2021, defence got total budgetary allocations of ₦3.8 trillion.

In 2015, budgetary allocation to defence was ₦388.45 billion; 2016, ₦429.12 billion; 2017, ₦467.12 billion; 2018, ₦580.14 billion; 2019, ₦158.11 billion; 2020, ₦975.77 billion; and 2021, ₦838 billion.

SERAP’s Deputy Director, Kolawole Oluwadare, said,  “Any allegations of corruption in the spending of public resources must be promptly, thoroughly, independently and transparently investigated.

“Suspected perpetrators should be brought to justice if there is relevant admissible evidence. Any missing public funds must be fully recovered and returned to the treasury. 

“Investigating and prosecuting the allegations would help Nigerians to know if the funds meant to defend the country and for purchase of arms to empower Nigerian soldiers have been transparent and accountable.

He, however, said the NSA denial should not be the end of the issue, adding that the President should order anti-graft agencies to probe the missing arms funds.

Kehinde Ogunyale

Freelance Investigative and Data Journalist

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