The Federal Government said it has commenced the final payment of the arrears on the outstanding allowances of some batches A and B N Power volunteers.
14,021 out of the 500,000 exited volunteers of the N Power scheme were owed five months stipends.
Their accounts were flagged in March 2020 by the Federal Government payment system, the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS).
The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development said their accounts were flagged because some of them had multiple accounts, while others received other payments such as salaries and allowances from multiple Federal Government Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs) on permanent employment or for participating in other schemes.
The ministry explained that the acts violate the regulations guiding the N-Power volunteer programme and could amount to gross misconduct and corruption.
Stating efforts made to tackle the challenges associated with the outstanding payment, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq in a statement by the Permanent Secretary, Bashir Alkali said: “The Ministry carried out a detailed investigation in collaboration with relevant government MDAs and so far the accounts of 9,066 volunteers were cleared for final payment out of the 14,021 volunteers.
“Based on this reality, the five- month allowance arrears of these volunteers, totalling N150,000 00 each is currently being paid.
“The allowances of the remaining 4,955 are withheld pending the conclusion of further investigation.
“Where clear violations of the agreements are established, such violators will be subjected to appropriate sanctions as stipulated by the law.”
Stating why it embarked on the investigation, Farouq said: “Contrary to some insinuations in the public domain, this process is a clear demonstration of the Ministry’s resolve to address this unfortunate incidence transparently for accountability and to forestall its future occurrence.
“As it has consistently maintained, the investigation carried out by the Ministry is in the best interest of the Country and has the major goal of institutionalizing the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) and ensuring its efficient management in line with Mr President’s resolve to ensure transparency and accountability in its implementation at all times.
“The Ministry regrets the delays experienced in concluding this process but assures the public that transparency and accountability cannot be compromised in all its activities”.