NFIU: CBN Accounts for 10% of Annual Budget

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Deji Elumoye in Abuja

The over N1trillion yearly budget of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) translates to 10 per cent of the N10.33 trillion 2020 budget proposal of the federal government, the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) has revealed.

Its Chairman, Moddibo Tukur, who made this disclosure yesterday while defending his agency’s 2020 budget estimates before the Senate Committee on Anti-corruption and Financial Crimes, also demanded for salaries of operatives of the agency to be captured as sub-head under the yearly expenditure profile of the CBN.

Tukur stressed that since NFIU is now domiciled in CBN albeit as an autonomous agency, adding that its salary structure and condition of service should reflect that of the CBN 100 per cent.

According to him, the request made to that effect by NFIU to the President in line with its establishment Act, was honoured but not fully, and urged the committee to look into it.

“When we were with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( EFCC), as an intelligence unit , condition of salary and service applicable to operatives of the commission, were fully extended to us.

“When we were moved to CBN as stipulated by the Act, we expected the same operational and management procedure to follow fully , which is not the case presently. We firmly believe that this can be done by the apex bank by just capturing our personnel costs as a sub-head under their expenditure profile on yearly basis,” he said.

The chairman added that operatives of the agency needed to be well remunerated to avoid being consumed by temptations that come their ways on daily basis as regards millions of US dollars being tracked from fraudulently smuggled into our financial system.

On the activities of the unit, he stated that “this morning alone , NFIU tracked and reversed $1.5million of such fraudulent transactions .Some of the banks are in problem finding all means of getting out of it.

“A lot of money is being taken out of the energy sector within the radius of billions of dollars but we are leaving up to the task of tracking and frustrating the financial fraud in line with our primary responsibility of assets tracing and tracking.”