The Nigeria Military arms purchases final report of President Muhammadu Buhari’s probe panel, tagged the Presidential Arms Audit Panel which was inaugurated at the outset of his administration was not made available to the public because the prime target, Goodluck Jonathan was exonerated by the investigators to the disappointment of the government.
The 13-man Presidential arms purchase audit Panel according to Hope For Nigeria was one of the first panels set up by Buhari’s government to audit arms purchases between 2007 and 2015. The panel confirmed that due process was followed in the requisition, approval, fund releases, actual purchases and the Good Received Notification (GRN) process.
The acknowledged that former president Jonathan was not involved in any procurement and never allowed his office to engage in arms purchasing procedures within the period under review, rather than the usual oversight through the NSA’s office.
They went further to state that arms were actually bought, but the earlier purchases did not go through due process. The panel noted that it was the period Nigeria was trying to get arms after military sanction by the US and her allies. Most arms then were bought through ‘black market’ and on a cash basis to avoid international payment system detection.
The panel in its preliminary investigations report release claimed that it discovered the immediate past National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd) diverted or not account for the sum of N13.2 billion (Not $2.1billion) of the fund meant for procurement of arms for the Nigeria Military.
The panel report did not mention anything like purchasing unserviceable weapons or substandard arms as reported in the media and claimed by some government officials. The panel made up of distinguished Nigerians toured military formations across the country to undertaking physical verification of military hardware and equipment either bought or claimed to have been bought during the period under review.
The panel report was never made public because the intention of the current government to indict the former President or the NSA did not materialise and they deemed it not useful making the final report public like similar panel reports.
Some military officials were indicted, although they protested their innocence as they claimed that they were not given the chance to give an account or testify during the panel’s seating.
Source – Hope For Nigeria.