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Polio: Senate to investigate whereabouts of $420m global fund

Senate on Monday vowed to begin proper probe into the alleged misappropriation ‎of over $420 million global funds for polio eradication in Nigeria.

Senate on Monday vowed to begin proper probe into the alleged misappropriation ‎of over $ 420 million global funds for polio eradication in Nigeria.

‎Chairman of the committee, Senator Mao Ohuabunwa [pictured above] made this known at Press Conference to Mark the World polio day.

He assured that its Committee will soon lunch full scale investigation into misappropriation of over $420 million global fund donations to Nigeria to kick polio out of the country.

The Chairman also revealed that the committee has already started‎ investigating another $1.5 million granted to the 36 states by the federal government to fight fresh outbreak of polio in the Chou try especially in the North East.

Senator Ohuabunwa said his committee written all relevant government in the handling of the global funds to furnish it with details of the distribution of such fund. 

Meanwhile the committee is set to tour all the 36 states of the federation to ascertain the utilization of the $1.5million fund granted to states to control the said diseases.

It could be recalled that a Geneva based Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) indicted Nigeria for allegedly misusing funds meant to immunise millions of children against polio. 

The Ministry of Health and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency were implicated in a fraud audit conducted by GAVI in which over $400 million disbursed for procurement of vaccines was alleged to have been grossly abused.

Ohuabunwa said during the Press briefing, “In this wise, my Committee will ensure its statutory oversight functions of key Government agencies and parastatals are conducted as and when due with a view to ensuring probity and accountability on how health-related, Primary Health Care (PHC) services are funded and implemented.‎

‎”Additionally, we want to reassure all donors and partners of our resolve to ensure donor funds are also well spent and that they reach the masses that need them. 

“Key funding agencies like Global Fund, GAVI and several others will be engaged by my committee to ensure mistakes of the past are avoided and that funds from these donors are used judiciously.”

The committee chairman stated: “We cannot afford mistakes of the past where funds for developmental projects from donors are improperly managed leading to sanctions on Nigeria from these donors. 

“We cannot continue to be disgraced as a nation through mismanagement of donor funds and must work hard to gain or regain the trust of all donors, bilateral and multi-lateral partners” 

“The committee will like to review the process of how certain decisions were made with a view to strengthening the whole grant system in a manner that makes monitoring the states more rigorous thus making the states more accountable on how the funds are used. 

“The Committee will work to ensure that only states that perform to standard get more funding.”‎ 

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