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AGF Suspended “Without Pay” By Finance Ministry Over N80bn Fraud Allegations

In a letter dated May 18, 2022, Zainab Ahmed, who heads the Ministry, said the suspension “without pay” was to allow for “proper and unhindered investigation” in line with public service rules.

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N80BN FRAUD ALLEGATIONS

The Ministry of Finance, Budget, and Planning has suspended Ahmed Idris, the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), pending the outcome of an investigation by the Economic Financial Crimes and Commission (EFCC) over his alleged involvement in N80 billion fraud.

The anti-graft agency on Monday arrested the senior public officer, after failing to honor several invitations for questioning.

In a letter dated May 18, 2022, Zainab Ahmed, who heads the Ministry, said the suspension “without pay” was to allow for “proper and unhindered investigation” in line with public service rules.

He is not expected to come to the office or contact any official in his office except for any disciplinary hearing that may be advised.

The allegation of his involvement had sparked several reactions from Nigerians at a time numerous challenges are confronting the nation, such as a dwindling economy, insecurity, and rising debt profile.

The country’s total debt stock as of December 2021 was N39.55trillion, according to Debt Management Office (DMO). While overall deficit in the 2022 budget was N6.30trillion, representing 3.46 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

After the arrest of the AGF, EFCC spokesman Wilson Uwujaren released a statement saying Idris was arrested after failing to honor the Commission’s invitations.

“The Commission’s verified intelligence showed that the AGF raked off the funds through bogus consultancies and other illegal activities using proxies, family members, and close associates,” Uwujaren said in a statement.

“The funds were laundered through real estate investments in Kano and Abuja.”

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