Procurement fraud costs Nigeria over N300billion yearly – Forensic Institute
The inability of Nigeria to establish the National Procurement Council in line with the Public Procurement Act of 2007 meant to standardize the cost of procurement in public and private live-in Nigeria in line with best global practices is costing the country in excess of N300 billion annually, the President and Chairman of Council of the Chartered Institute of Forensics and Fraud Examiners of Nigeria, Dr. Iliyasu B. Gashinbaki has said.
The 14 years Council in abeyance was convinced to take over the procurement functions currently undertaken by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) at the Federal level and by State Executive Councils (SEC) at the states level, set up uniform and standard pricing for goods and services as opposed to the current situation where price relativity rule with differences for same goods and services supplied by contractors or consultants resulting in the huge cost which is far in excess of some key Federal Government’s allocation for the current fiscal 2021 spending plan.
The amount is almost close to the entire provision to the Statutory Transfers comprising all commissions that draw funding from the first line charge like the National Judicial Commission; National Assembly Commission; National Population Commission National Human Rights Commission and the Niger Delta Commission among others.
The Chartered Institute of Forensics and Fraud Examiners of Nigeria who raised the alarm in Abuja at a press conference to commend the House of Representatives for passing the Institute’s Bill at the second Reading last week said the amount is the amount lost to the haphazard invoicing which makes items and services very expensive than anywhere else in the world.
He promised that upon passage and assent to Law, the Institute which major mandate is to regulate the practice of Forensics in Nigeria will assist in the standardization of invoices and reduce the waste through capacity training of all the relevant stakeholders from anti-corruption agencies to procurement officers to detect such fraud and eliminate them.
Gashinbaki also the Bill will also drastically reduce the current capital flight being borne by the country in the importation of forensic experts to Nigeria for forensic engagements as a result of the absence of Chartered Forensics experts locally.
The Registrar of the Institute, Mrs.Rachael Bunmwakat Ibi- Kuzhy promised that the Institute will be strict to rules and practice along best global standards to realize the vision of its founders.
She equally expressed appreciation to the National Assembly for the cooperation received so far and expressed readiness to work with every organ of Government in the realization of the objective, restating that both the public and private sectors in the country stand to immensely benefit from the Institute’s Charter.
The Institute whose membership consists of chartered accountants; economists, security personnel, and social scientists is 10 years old and has over 4000 members.