The Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mustapha Maihaja, has denied allegations by the House of Representatives that the Agency mismanaged over N33 billion, meant for various emergency interventions including the provision of relief materials to internally displaced persons in the northeast.
In response to the report of the House of Representatives Committee on Emergency and Disaster Preparedness, the NEMA boss told journalists in Abuja on Wednesday that every money allocated by the Federal Government for disaster management were spent diligently and in compliance with existing laws.
He said the House of Representatives’ committee got the whole figures mixed up, leading it to make the accusation.
“We spent only N1.7billion in about 10 or 11 months. The remaining N6.6billion was reported to them that it was in the account, so how could they have arrived at the N30biilion, that is a question to ask.
“On the issue of N1.6billion, we received N1.6billion, we carried out needs assessment because when the money was released, it was after the disaster has happened. So, the N1.6billion was spent. We have proof and receipts of documents from all the states except for Bayelsa State.”
The DG also denied receiving N5.8 billion for the Emergency Intervention of Food Security in the North East (EFINE) as contained in the committee’s report.
He explained that NEMA only got about N800 million while other funds were paid directly to contractors.
“The Emergency Intervention of Food security in the North East (EFINE) came into being due to a number of factors and the project demand was a clear case of an emergency.
“In the course of the programme, grains were moved from various warehouses in Ibadan, Funtua, Kano, Gombe and Kaduna to the North East to cater for the dire food needs of victims of insurgency.
“The movement of the grains was well-coordinated with adequate security and there was no reported case of a single bag of grain that got missing in the movement.
“As part of the process of monitoring the project, a visit was undertaken by the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning on August 7 and 8, 2017 to Bauchi, Yola and Maiduguri.
“During those visits, no issues were raised by the states and throughout the entire process, we did not receive any feedback, positive or negative on the process.
“Taken into cognizance the open door policy we had taken and the long tenure of the project, there were many avenues for these issues to be raised to NEMA or the acting president,’’ Mr Maihaja added.
The House Committee on Emergency and Disaster preparedness had on November 8 indicted the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) of mismanaging over N33 billion that was given to the agency for disaster management.