OrderPaperToday – The Senate has faulted payment of productivity allowance to staff of the National Agency For Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) amounting to N324 million without approval from the  National  Salaries, Income  and  Wages  Commission  (NSIWC).

The Senate, through its Committee on Public Accounts, said it was illegal to increase the allowance of staff of NAFDAC as contained in a query in the 2016 Report of the Auditor General of the Federation.

The productivity allowance was done with payment voucher dated April 13, 2015 without approval from NSIWC.

However, the Director General of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, admitted that the approval has not been granted from the NSIWC but moves are being made to secure the required approval.

The Acting Chairman of the Committee, Senator Hadejia Hassan Ibrahim (APC, Jigawa North East) therefore stepped down the query till NAFDAC obtains the approval for the payments.

The query had stated: “A  payment  voucher  no.  29519  dated  13/04/2015  was  raised  for  payment  of  2014 Productivity  Allowance  to  staff  amounting  to  N323,678,741.97  (Three  hundred  and twenty-three  million,  six  hundred  and  seventy-eight  thousand,  seven  hundred  and  forty-one  naira,  ninety-seven  kobo).

“The  authority  from  the  National  Salaries, Income  and  Wages  Commission  (NSIWC)  giving  legitimacy  to  the  payment  of  such (productivity)allowance  as  was  the  case  with  NAFDAC‟s  salaries  and  other  allowances,  was not present during the hearing.”

The committee, therefore, requested the Director-General to  produce  evidence  of NSIWC  approval  for  payment  of  the allowance  as  part  of  the  remuneration package  of  the  agency.

“The  Director-General’s  explanation  of  obtaining  the  approval  of  the  NAFDAC Council  or  Honourable  Minister  of  Health  is  not  tenable  because  the  appropriate authority  in  such  matters  is  NSIWC.

“The Director-General  should  produce  the  approval  of  the  Commission  or  recover  the payments from  the beneficiaries  as initially requested”, Hadejia stated.

 

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