20 Whistle-blowers Get N375.8m From FG

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The Federal Government says it has paid N375.8 million to 20 providers of useful information under the whistle-blower’s policy.

Mr Salisu Dambatta, the Director of Information, Federal Ministry of Finance, said on Wednesday in Abuja that the sum was paid with regard to the recovery of N11.6 billion.

Dambatta said that the payment was only on recovered assets that had been declared free from litigation by the attorney-general of the federation.

“This payment, which is the first under the whistle-blower policy, underscores the commitment of the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to meeting obligations to information providers under the policy.

“The policy is an essential tool in the fight against corruption.

“The ministry, therefore, encourages all Nigerians with information on misconduct, violation or improper activity which can impact negatively on Nigeria, to report it to the appropriate authorities,’’ he said.

Dambatta said that the policy had been amended to include the introduction of a formal legal agreement between the information provider and the Federal Government.

He said that the agreement had already been executed by the attorney-general.

Dambatta said that the amendment was introduced to protect the identity of information providers.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)  reports that the Federal Government introduced the whistle-blower policy in December with the purpose of supporting the fight against corruption and promoting accountability and transparency in public finances management.

The Whistle-blower Unit is resident in Federal Ministry of Finance, Abuja.

It is staffed with personnel seconded from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, and Department of State Service.

The Nigeria Police Force and Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit also form part of the unit, which has received 2, 150 communications and 337 tips through its dedicated channels.

The information has led to recovery of substantial assets illegally acquired by individuals. (NAN)