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Illegal deductions: EFCC begins probe of Benue govt

By Emma Ovuakporie

ABUJA—The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has commenced investigation into alleged illegal deductions from local government allocations by Benue State Governor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam.

Sources at the anti-graft agency said the investigation followed discoveries made by operatives who are inquiring into activities of 12 local government chairmen suspended by the Benue State House of Assembly last month for allegedly misappropriating excess crude oil allocation.

The chairmen who were detained for days in Abuja before they were granted  bail last week had been asked by EFCC to produce original documents issued to them by the Benue State Bureau for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in respect of allocations made to their councils.

It was reliably gathered that original copies of allocations made to the local governments in the state since 2007 from the federation account had been obtained from the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Allocation Commission and other relevant agencies to ascertain the veracity of the claims.

But the state government apparently jittery with the dimension the investigation is going is unwilling to allow the council chairmen to produce copies of the demanded documents on monthly allocations issued to them as it was feared that the development will reveal the  difference between what the council chief executives are given by the state and what they are actually allocated from the federal level.


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