It, however, discovered massive discrepancies and violations in the disbursement and utilisation.
The committee gave example of how the missing money was reportedly spent, with over N4billion disbursed as loan to the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to fund the Gurara Water project, while about N224 billion was disbursed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the purchase of chancery.
Others include various sums which were disbursed as loans to several other ministries and agencies to fund other projects like payment of monetisation to the federal civil servants, aviation, COJA, OPEC, Conference of Ministers, among other frivolities, including Joint Venture Companies (JVC), that had nothing to do with solid minerals and with no evidence of repayments.
The committee, however, found out that the records of the Federal Ministry Finance and those of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) contradicted each other.
The two records could not account for about N44 billion out of the total figure of N873billion in one year, which is the total record between 2002 and May 31, 2012.
The chairman of the committee, Senator Ahmed Lawan, declared that “certainly, there are massive discrepancies between the CBN figures and that of the Ministry of Finance.”
He added that it was not good enough and was in clear violation of existing laws.
The special fund, according to the committee, was created in 2002 by the Federal Government as a special intervention fund to open up
the nation’s economy, especially the non-oil sector.
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Mr Danladi Kifasi and the Deputy Director Finance, Suleiman Tahir, explained that they were yet to carry out bank reconciliation that would clarify the grey areas, but the committee insisted that it was convinced that the missing period between 2002 and 2005 (omitted in all the CBN’s record) might not necessarily have any effect on the discrepancies.
The committee, however, found out that although the Special Intervention Fund was set up to develop solid and other non-oil minerals for the benefit of non-oil producing states of the federation, in the disbursement of the fund, the records showed that no single project was funded by the fund.