ICPC to probe looted palliatives amid denials of diversion

ICPC to probe looted palliatives amid denials of diversion

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The Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) on Tuesday hinted on plans to commence the investigation of the sources of looted items.

FILE: A MAN AND A WOMAN HAVING A CONVERSATION DURING FOOD DISTRIBUTION

This was contained in a press statement obtained from the website of the organisation, barely 24 hours after the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) denied claims of diversion of palliatives materials meant for the masses in warehouses across the Country.

In a statement titled, ‘Palliatives looting: ICPC to investigate sources of looted items’, said the probe was necessitated by the looting spree that ensued as a result of the protests across the Country.

The anti-corruption agency also said agencies and ministries responsible for the distribution of COVID-19 palliative relief materials would be probed, assuring Nigerians that the outcome of its findings would be made public.

The statement read: “It should be recalled that in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Commission had earlier in the year taken proactive measures to prevent corruption in the administration of the COVID-19 funds by setting up a monitoring team that was charged with the responsibility of preventing possible abuse.

“In addition to the above, the Commission drew up ‘Guidelines for PTF Management of COVID-19 Relief Funds’ and issued an advisory on the management of the COVID-19 relief funds.

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“The scope of the monitoring activities of ICPC did not cover CACOVID funds which were donated by individuals and private sector organizations as palliatives, but only the Federal Government funds used to procure relief materials and other palliatives.

“In view of the recent looting spree, ICPC will investigate the sources of goods looted from palliatives warehouses, the National Emergency Management Agency and private houses to unravel whether or not the properties looted were personally acquired, the government procured, CACOVID donated, or are empowerment materials which are part of the constituency projects initiative of the Federal Government.

“ICPC will also scale up the monitoring of Ministries, Departments and Agencies charged with the acquisition and distribution of COVID-19 palliative relief materials and make public its findings in due course”, the statement said.

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