Presidency Gives Breakdown on $1bn Excess Crude Account Fund
By Mathew Dadiya, Abuja
The Presidency has released further details on how the $1billion which was withdrawn from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) for security was spent.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and publicity, Garba Shehu, 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 has remained unspent at the CBN.
Shehu 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 authorized by the National Economic Council.
“The record we have is that the Buhari administration paid $496,374,470 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 United States of America. 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.
“These procurements include money for the purchase of Navy Lynx helicopters. Total amount spent so far: $876,888,428.71. 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.”
He said that the entire expenditure involved in these exercises is on the basis of government-to-government procurement.
He added “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 USD 1,000 million 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 USD 1,000 million as missing. The NSA will not have said this.
“I’am sure have 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
Army to Review Troops’ Conduct During Elections, other Operations
The Nigerian Army is set to review the conduct of troops in Operation Safe Conduct during the just concluded 2023 general elections across the country.
The review is expected to take place during the forthcoming Chief of Army Staff First Quarter 2023 Conference.
This is contained in a statement by the Director of Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, on Thursday in Abuja.
Nwachukwu said that the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, would interact with the General Officers Commanding (GOC), field commanders and other senior officers.
He said that the interaction would help to provide possible guidance towards enhancing army operations and other activities.
He said the conference, which would hold from April 3 to April 6 would offer an avenue for reappraisal of the administrative affairs of the Nigerian army.
He added that it would also help in evaluation and comprehensive review of ongoing operational engagements within the first quarter.
According to him, this will provide the army an in-depth insight to enable far reaching decisions towards achieving its set objective of addressing the multifaceted security challenges confronting the country.
Nwachukwu said that the COAS would present a new Toyota Hilux vehicles each to 14 Army Warrant Officers who had attained the peak of their soldiering career.
“Similarly, the COAS will commission the newly constructed Faruk Yahaya Historical Park located at Asokoro Abuja.
“The conference will also showcase some research and development effort of the Nigerian Army in an exhibition.
“The three days conference promises to be very eventful, as it will witness a review of the conduct of troops during the recently concluded Operation SAFE CONDUCT 2023 and other operations across the country,” he said.
Nwachukwu reaffirmed the commitment and resolve of the Nigerian army to discharging its constitutional mandate professionally.
“We will also be resolute in upholding our values of courage, selfless sacrifice, respect, discipline and unalloyed loyalty to constituted authority,” he added. (NAN)
Buhari Pleased with Troops` Performance in North East – Gen. Irabor
The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Lucky Irabor, says that President Muhammadu Buhari is happy with the troops performance in the fight against insurgents in the North East.
Irabor stated this on Thursday in Maiduguri while addressing troops at the headquarters of the Joint Task Force, North East Operation Hadin Kai.
“The Commander in Chief is happy with you and has asked me to relay to you to keep up the standard and momentum that you are displaying in the north east operation,” Irabor said.
The CDS also lauded the successes being recorded by the troops, adding that it was based on their sense of patriotism and resilience.
He said that the troops` performance showed the true manifestation of the training provided to them.
Irabor said that commanders in the theatre were putting final touches for more onslaughts on remnants of Boko Haram and ISWAP.
“You must ensure that the criminals wherever they are hiding you smoke them out
“I know that you will do that, very soon we will be back to celebrate together,” Irabor said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the CDS also held a meeting with the Theatre Commander, Maj.-Gen. Ibrahim Ali, GOC 7 Division, Maj. Gen. Waidi Shuaibu and other operational commanders.
He also interacted with wounded soldiers at the military hospital in Maimalari Cantonment. (NAN)
Former CGS, Lt.-Gen. Oladipo Diya dies at 79
Former Chief of General Staff under Gen. Sani Abacha’s government, retired Lt.-Gen. Oladipo Diya(GCON), is dead.
The former military governor of Ogun died at the age of 79.
His death was announced on Sunday in a statement by his son, Oyesinmilola Diya.
It read, “On behalf of the entire Diya family home and abroad; we announce the passing on to Glory of our dear husband, father, grandfather and brother, Lt- Gen.Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya (Rtd).
“Our dear Daddy passed onto glory in the early hours of March 26, 2023.Please keep us in your prayers as we mourn his demise in this period.
Further announcements will be made public in due course,” he said.(NAN)
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