The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) says allegations of financial misappropriation leveled against its chairperson, Abike Dabiri-Erewa is false.
NIDCOM in a statement signed by Abdur-Rahman Balogun, its Head of Media, Public Relations, and Protocols, outrightly dismissed the allegations, adding that the petitioner is known for such shenanigans.
Read the full statement below:
Re: Alleged N234 million Misappropriation of Ministry of health budget by the Diaspora Commission.
The attention of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) has been drawn to the above false report by Sahara Reporters, quoting one Frederick Odorige of accusing NIDCOM Chairperson of misappropriation of N234 million budget appropriated in the Ministry of Health.
The immediate question that comes to mind is how NIDCOM, a statutory agency of government, will be responsible for the expenditure of a sub head in a totally different ministry ?
For the mere fact that a budgeting sub head on Diaspora is in the Ministry of Health budget does not translate or add to NIDCOM’s budget, so where is the fraud in the Commission when such money was not domiciled in it and it has no expenditure control?
Is there any evidence that such money was even released to the Ministry of Health let alone being misappropriated as alleged by the storyteller? Well, the Ministry will speak for itself.
As for NIDCOM, it is practically impossible for the Commission to influence the budget of a ministry while struggling to have its own budget increased.
If NIDCOM, struggling with a capital budget of about a N160 million naira has the power to influence or spend N234 millon, why would it domicile it in a ministry or agency it has no control over?
While the said Hungary-based Frederick Odorige of one Global Coalition for Security and Democracy in Nigeria whom Sahara Reporters quoted, is notorious for dark, spurious, ridiculously bizarre allegations and should ordinarily be ignored, we are responding to this because it borders on finances and we owe our esteemed diaspora community a proper clarification of facts.
As a Commission, we shall remain focussed on our mandate as we look forward to another successful diaspora day scheduled for July 25.
It is hoped that Sahara Reporters will give this rejoinder the same prominence it gave the initial report and also endeavor to verify such sinister, unfounded allegations.
July 15, 2022.