The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability ( SERAP )Project has launched a lawsuit against President Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) for failing to investigate claims of N106 billion in public monies missing from 149 ministries, divisions, and organizations.
The action came after the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation said in his 2018 annual audited report that N105,662,350,077.46 in public monies had gone missing, been misused, or been unaccounted for across 149 MDAs.
Mr Abubakar Malami, SAN, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, and Mrs Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, are named as Respondents in the action.
SERAP is seeking “an order of mandamus to direct and compel President Buhari to promptly investigate the alleged missing N106 billion in public funds, ensure prosecution of anyone suspected of being responsible, and the full recovery of any missing public money” in a suit filed last week in the Federal High Court in Abuja.
In the suit, SERAP argued that “Recovering the alleged missing public funds would reduce the pressure on the Federal Government to borrow more money to fund the budget, enable the authorities to meet the country’s constitutional and international obligations, and reduce the growing level of public debts.
“Directing and compelling President Buhari to ensure the investigation and prosecution of the alleged grand corruption documented by the Auditor-General would be entirely consistent with the government’s own commitment to fight corruption, improve the integrity of MDAs, and serve the public interest.
“The alleged missing public funds have hampered the ability of the indicted MDAs to meet the needs of average citizens, as the missing funds could have helped the government to invest in key public goods and services, and to improve access of Nigerians to these goods and services.”