The Senate Public Account Committee has launched an investigation into the Public Works Programme coordinated by the National Directorate of Employment in which 774,000 Nigerians were recruited with the mandate of 1000 people per local government.
The Federal Government earmarked N52bn for the project in 2020 in which 774,000 Nigerians were paid N20,000 each for three months.
However, at the committee sitting of Senate Public Accounts chaired by Senator Mathew Urhoghide, the lawmakers gave the National Directorate of Employment two weeks to submit a comprehensive report on the beneficiaries of the scheme across the 36 states of the country and the Federal Capital Territory.
The committee, which is currently investigating the expenditure of service-wide votes, discovered that NDE collected N26bn for the scheme in 2020.
However, drama ensued at the committee meeting on Tuesday when all seven senators that were present at the meeting said that none of their constituents benefited from the scheme.
Senator Thompson Sekibo said that nobody benefited from his senatorial district from the program, noting that all names submitted by lawmakers were not considered.
Also, Senator Michael Nnachi said no single person benefited from his senatorial district, stressing that the NDE should make available a beneficiaries’ list from his senatorial district.
The committee members therefore unanimously agreed that the NDE should submit names, phone numbers, and account details of the 1000 beneficiaries in each of the 774 local governments within one week.
But the representative of NDE, who is a director of the agency, Isah Abdul, appealed to the committee to give the agency three weeks to compile the list of beneficiaries.
However, the committee declined and gave the agency two weeks to submit the list.