The Governor of Lagos State, Babjide Sanwo-Olu, may be blacklisted by the National Finance Intelligence Unit (NFIU) for breaching its guidelines.
One month ago, the NFIU had issued its guidelines which had barred State Governments from touching funds that have been allocated to Local Governments. However, sources in the Alimosho Local Government Area have revealed that the new Governor of Lagos State have deducted more than N370 million from its June allocation.
The six local council development areas (LCDAs) making up the Local Government had revealed that they were in expectation of N750 million which they had planned to share amongst themselves.
Sources from the Alimosho Local Government had divulged to SAHARA REPORTERS that they were left with just about N320 million.
The danger for Sanwo-Olu is that, if the NFIU decides to act on the issue, he as the Governor of Lagos, as well as the CEO of the bank where the joint Local Government funds is domiciled are likely to be blacklisted.
The Accountant General of Lagos State, Abimbola Umar, had however told the Joint Account and Allocations Committee that the government had been granted a waiver from the anti corruption investigation body, to deduct from funds which have been earlier allocated to the LGA for the purpose of paying staff of local governments their salaries, pensions and gratuities.
In stark contrast to this claim, SAHARA REPORTERS had said that their source in the NFIU revealed that the director of the NFIU, Modibbo Hamman-Tukur, had not granted any such waiver to the Lagos State government.
“Please, we did not give concession to any state to do any direct deductions from JAAC and will never do so,” the source quoted Hamman-Tukur saying.
“However, we also admonished all LG councils to remit their obligations under the law without being forced to do so. The funds are local government funds,” the source added.
The Deputy Press Secretary to Governor Sanwo-Olu, Gboyega Akosile, when quizzed by SAHARA REPORTERS to verify claims that the NFIU had granted them a waiver directed the reporters to question the Local Government Chairmen instead.
“They are the ones to know if any monies had been withdrawn from them,’ he added.
He stated that the NFIU would as well be in a good position position to give an answer to the question.
When contacted to uphold or deny the claims of deduction from Local Government accounts, the Accountant General of Lagos State, Abimbola Umar, failed to take her calls or reply text messages sent to her.
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