SERAP Drags 36 Govs, Wike To Court Over FAAC Allocations


Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has dragged the 36 governors and Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike before a Federal High Court in Abuja seeking an order for them to account for Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) allocations collected since 1999.

SERAP is also asking the court to compel the governors and Wike to publish spending details of the FAAC allocations collected by their states and the FCT since 1999, including the list and locations of projects executed with the money.

The civil society organisation said it filed the suit based on reports that FAAC disbursed N1.123 trillion to the federal, state, and local governments for March 2024.

In the suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/666/2024, which is yet to be assigned to a judge, SERAP is also asking the court to “compel the defendants to invite the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to probe allegations of corruption linked to the allocations and to monitor how the money is spent.

SERAP is arguing that Nigerians ought to know in what manner public funds including FAAC allocations, are spent by the governors and the FCT minister.

The plaintiff also maintained that opacity in the spending of the FAAC allocations collected by the defendants would continue to negatively impact the fundamental interests of the citizens.

SERAP further insisted that the trillions of FAAC allocations received by Nigeria’s 36 states and the FCT have allegedly gone down the drain and that the resulting human costs directly threaten the human rights of socially and economically vulnerable Nigerians.

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The plaintiff is also arguing that without the information on the spending details of the FAAC allocations, Nigerians cannot follow the actions of their states and the FC,T and they cannot properly fulfill their responsibilities as citizens.

SERAP further submitted that directing and compelling the defendants to provide the information sought and widely published the spending details of the FAAC allocations collected by them would serve legitimate public interests.

The plaintiff claimed that the failure by the governors and the FCT ministers to account for the spending of the FAAC allocations collected by them is entirely inconsistent and incompatible with the Nigerian Constitution 1999 [as amended] and the country’s international anti-corruption obligations.

SERAP averred that, “States and the FCT should be guided by transparency and accountability principles and proactively account for the spending of the FAAC allocations collected by them.

“Secrecy in the spending of FAAC allocations collected by the governors and the FCT minister also denies Nigerians the right to know how public funds are spent. Transparency in the spending would allow them to retain control over their government.

“The governors and FCT minister have a legal obligation to provide the information sought, including the list of specific projects completed with the FAAC allocations collected, the locations of any such projects and completion reports of the projects.

“The information sought should also include details of the salaries and pensions paid from the FAAC allocations collected, as well as the details of projects executed on hospitals and schools with the FAAC allocations,” SERAP said.

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It further averred that, “Despite the increased FAAC allocations to states and FCT, millions of residents in several states and the FCT continue to face extreme poverty and lack access to basic public goods and services.

“The reported removal of petrol subsidy and the floating exchange rate by the Federal Government has translated into increased FAAC allocations to states and the FCT. However, there is no corresponding improvement in the security and welfare of millions of Nigerians.

“FAAC allocations received by the states and the FCT are reportedly characterised by mismanagement, diversion of funds, and abandoned projects. FAAC allocations have also been allegedly spent for the purpose of campaigns and political patronage.

“Publishing the documents on the spending of FAAC allocations by the states and the FCT would promote transparency, accountability, and reduce the risks of corruption in the spending of the funds.

“Publishing the documents would also enable Nigerians to meaningfully engage in implementing projects executed with the FAAC allocations collected.

“The report that some 140 million Nigerians are poor suggests corruption and mismanagement in the spending of trillions of naira in FAAC allocations collected by the states and the FCT,” SERAP stated.

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God'swill Ofigo
Nigeria Blogger / Social Media Promoter/ Talent Manager/ Entertainer/ CEO OfyNaija Blog. WhatsApp: 0904709861

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