A whistleblower leaked an official letter written on behalf of Nigeria’s minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed to to the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) requesting a loan of N13.2 million to finance the minister’s trip to China.
The letter was obtained by The Trent and can be viewed HERE. According to the whistleblower, the request is a contravention of civil service rules.
The document is signed by the director of public relations and protocol, Mr. Dama, and it reads, “I am directed to inform you [NBC] that the Honourable Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed is proceeding on official assignment to China on Sunday, 15th May 2016.
“The Honourable Minister has therefore approved that you loan the Ministry the total sum of (N13,120,470) thirteen million, one hundred and twenty thousand four hundred and seventy Naira only to enable him and his team embark on the China trip to carry out the assignment.”
So, citizen reporter website, SaharaReporters, being an APC government friendly platform, decided to apply caution and called the Lai Mohammed to “confirm the authenticity of the letter”. And here is what Lai Mohammed told them, “It’s not unusual when the ministry wants to do something but you don’t have enough funds you ask one of your parastatals under you to provide the funds for the trip.
“While we are waiting for the appropriate head to have the money you can go to any of your parastatals and ask, give us the money and when we are funded we will return the money to you.”
SaharaReporters, who claimed to have “obtained the letter” decided to ask the minister how the letter was leaked and he said, “I am so disappointed that an internal memo like that would be with SaharaReporters, it shows a lack of integrity in the ministry.”
The whole impunity part of the minister’s response comes after when he says, “The way the ministry is run is not the subject of public discussion.”
But, minister, you owe the public an explanation on how government funds is spent? Lai Mohammed displays the height of disdain for Nigerians by retorting, “I do not.”
So, there you have it Nigerians, ladies and gentlemen, child of all ages… Lai Mohammed thinks he is not accountable to you.
What a government of impunity!