The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has been making progress in assuring that the fight against corruption stands.
To this effect, the federal government has released the sum of N375.8 million for the payment of 20 whistleblowers, who assisted in the recovery of N11.6 billion.
“The Federal Ministry of Finance has confirmed release of N375.8M to the first batch of 20 providers of information under the Whistleblower Policy. The payment, of various amounts totaling N375,875,000, relate to the recovery of N11,635,000,000,” According to a statement signed by the director of press, Salisu Dambatta at the ministry of finance.
The government said it had received 2,150 communications and 337 tips through its dedicated channels from many patriotic Nigerians; the statement reads also.
The minister of finance, Kemi Adeosun said: “This payment, which is the first under the Whistleblower Policy, underscores the commitment of the President Muhmmadu Buhari-led administration in meeting obligations to information providers under the Whistleblower Policy. The policy is an essential tool in the fight against corruption.”
Mrs. Adeosun also gave details of the Whistleblower Unit (WBU), she said: “The Whistleblower Unit is the first line of response to whistleblower information, where initial review is undertaken before cases are forwarded to the relevant investigative agencies,” a multi-agency team, which is resident in ministry of finance Headquarters, staffed by secedes from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Department of State Services (DSS), the Nigeria Police Force and Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit (PICA), among others.
The Minister affirmed that President Buhari’s administration would continue to encourage all Nigerians who reports to the appropriate authority any information related to misconduct, violation or improper activity which could cause negative impacts on Nigeria.
She also revealed the recent improvement on the Whistleblower policy, including the introduction of a formal legal agreement between information providers and the federal government, which is executed by the minister of justice and attorney-general of the federation. Also the introduction of procedures to ensure the protection of the identity of information providers during the payment process.
She added that all payments are taxable and are only made upon confirmation of the final recovery of assets as confirmed by the Attorney-General of the Federation as being free of legal disputes or litigation, According to the source.