SERAP Sues Lawan, Gbajabiamila Over Missing N4.4bn NASS Funds

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has filed a lawsuit against the Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan, and Speaker of House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila over “their failure to probe, and to refer to appropriate anti-corruption agencies allegations that N4.4bn of public money budgeted for the National Assembly is missing, misappropriated, diverted or stolen, as documented in three annual audited reports by the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation.”

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The suit followed the publication of annual audited reports for 2015, 2017, and 2018 in which the Auditor-General of the Federation raised “concerns about alleged diversion and misappropriation of public funds, sought the recovery of any missing funds, and asked that the evidence of recovery should be forwarded to his office.”

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In the suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/366/2021 filed last Friday at the Federal High Court in Abuja, SERAP is seeking: “an order of mandamus directing and compelling Dr Lawan, Mr Gbajabiamila and the National Assembly to perform their constitutional oversight functions to ensure prompt and transparent investigation into the allegations that N4.4 billion budgeted for the National Assembly may be missing and unaccounted for.”

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In the suit, SERAP is arguing that “By the combined reading of the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution of 1999 [as amended], the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the UN Convention against Corruption, which Nigeria has ratified, the National Assembly has legal duties to combat corruption, and promote transparency and accountability in the management of public resources.”

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