Abdulmumin Jibrin, sacked chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, has revealed how principal officers of the House allegedly diverted various sums of money.
Speaker Yakubu Dogara and other House leaders allegedly diverted over N10b meant for the personal running cost of members, he alleged.
“It should be noted, however, that money is voted as ‘running cost’ to members apart from salaries.
“You don’t need a professor or a committee of technocrats to tell you what is reasonable as running cost for member of the House and also how the money should be administered and who should be the recipient of the money.
“The way the allowances of members are currently structured cannot pass the integrity test of any of the aforesaid. The issue of allowances of Members of the House is another systemic corruption.
“Since you cannot afford the systemic shock if you go all out and arrest 200 to 300 members at once, what you do is to deal with the issues in phases.
“Today, I will start with the 10 principal officers of the House of Representatives. If just these 10 are named and shamed, it will force reform in the House. I will therefore provide what each one of them had collected as “office running cost” in their entire stay in the House.
“If any one of them disputes my figure, he or she should not make a drama out of it but just simply tell the country how much he or she has collected.
“Running cost is a money collected by many members (with a few exception) and used as personal funds. No more, no less – case closed! Most of these members use it to acquire properties, cars and live a life of luxury they never lived before coming to the House.
“Though there exist systems for retirement of such money but a simple investigation by a primary school pupil will reveal the massive fraud therein.
“From computation of various sub heads of allowances of the House, Speaker Yakubu Dogara has been in the House from 2007 to date. He has received about N1.5billion. Deputy Speaker Yusuf Lasun has been in the house from 2011 to date. He has received about N800million.
“House Leader Femi Gbajabiamila has been in the House from 2003 to date. He has received about N1.2billion. Deputy House Leader Buba has been in the House from 2007 to date. He received about N1.2billion.
“Whip Alhassan Doguwa has been in the House from 2003 to date. He has received about N1.2 billion. Deputy Whip Pally Iriase has been in the house from 2011 to date. He has received N700 million.
“Minority Leader Leo Ogor has been in the House from 2007 to date. He has received N1.2 billion. Deputy Minority Leader Barde has been in the House from 2011 to date. He has received N700 million. Minority Whip Chuma has been in the House from 2007 to date.
“He has received N800 million. And finally, Deputy Minority Whip Binta has been in the House from 2011 to date. She has received N700 million.
“So in between these 10 principal Officers, the country has pumped about N10 billion – and still counting! As I have mentioned earlier, in most cases with few exceptions, these funds are diverted for personal use.
“I will provide further breakdown of these figures in due course. I will also provide 50 additional names of members with worst cases of diversion of such funds in due course so we can name and shame them.
“As we continue this struggle to wipe out corruption and restore sanity in the House of Representatives, I will continue to urge Nigerians to remain vigilant as these corrupt elements can go to any length to change the narration and evade justice,” Jibrin stated.