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Humanitarian ministry mess worsens as Edu approves funds for flight tickets, taxis to non-existent airport



The alleged corruption emanating from the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation has escalated as a leaked memo seen by Ripples Nigeria showed that the embattled Minister in the ministry, Betta Edu approved funds for flight tickets and airport taxis for the ministry’s staff to Kogi State which bizarrely has no airport.

The memo dated November 6, 2023 issued by the national programme manager, requested the total sum of N72,374,500, under the memo titled: ‘The Disbursement Under the 2023 Grant for Vulnerable Groups Programmes in Kogi State, 2023’, and was approved by the minister.

In the memo, the sum is appropriated for the minister’s “advanced team” to travel by air for an “event” in Kogi. It included the sum of N60m as disbursement of N20,000 to 3,000 beneficiaries, N3m as logistics for disbursement, N2.515m as taxi fare and flight ticket and other expenses including Media and Publicity, security, logistics and rentage of chairs, canopies, banners and Public Address System (PAS) gulped N4.7m totaling N72,374,500.

READ ALSO:PDP demands Betta Edu’s sack, prosecution for alleged fraud in ministry

Each of the minister’s “advanced team” members, including aides, received the sum of N200,000 for flight tickets, N20,000 for airport taxi, and local running expenses and DTA depending on grade level — all amounting to N72,374,500.

The sum of N300,000 was earmarked for the minister’s air ticket.

The memo reads “You may wish to respectfully refer to the above stated event in Kogi State.

“Accordingly, the Honorable Minister may kindly wish to consider and approve the cost implication in the sum of Seventy Two Million, Three Hundred and Seventy Four Thousand and Five Hundred naira ((N72,374,500) only and direct the DFA NSIP to release the amount to be managed by the Project Accountant posted to the cluster”.

Again, as the case with the N585m under investigation, the account of an individual Tolu Martins with an account number 0408279025 domiciled at FCMB was presented to receive the said fund.

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