Prof. Suleiman Bogoro, Executive Secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), has debunked allegations that N359 billion was missing from TETFund under his leadership.
Bogoro spoke on Tuesday in Abuja when the House of Representatives Committee on Tertiary Education and Services, led by Aminu Suleiman, paid an oversight visit to the agency.
Bogoro, while clearing the air on the allegation raised by the committee while making reference to the funds in their audited financial reports, said that a total of N359 billion was withdrawn from the coffers of the Fund without specific reasons in 2013.
He said that the deductions made had negative impact on the intervention agency, while stressing that TETFund had filed petitions to the Ministry of Finance to recover the money.
Bogoro, however, allayed fears of financial impropriety in the agency, saying that the Board of Trustees (BOT) of the fund usually give approval before funds were disbursed.
He regretted that various narratives had trailed the missing funds, with some persons “mischievously ascribing the funds to my tenure”, when they had no facts to back such claims.
“On that amount, I think there was about N128 billion taken out in one tranche that had nothing to do with education.
“We had to write the Ministry of Finance requesting for the money; it was even ascribed to me by some mischievous persons.
“We, however, appreciate the National Assembly members for their concern and efforts to see that these monies are refunded to us by this year, because it will help our accounts to be more balanced,” he said.
He further explained that N10 billion, which was meant for high impact projects in selected tertiary institutions, had been mopped up from the system.
“We have also uncovered some benefiting tertiary institutions stockpiling the allocated funds for several years without utilising it for the purposes they were meant to be used for,” he fumed. (NAN)