The Senate has requested for personnel cash book of the Federal High Court over unexplained difference of N456 million in the staff salaries.
The request was as result of the query issued by the Auditor General of the Federation on personnel cashbook balance from January to December 2015.
The document was submitted to the Senate Committee on Public Account chaired by Senator Mathew Urhoghide.
The query reads: “Personnel Account cashbook from January to December, 2015 was N2.4 billion while the transcript closing balance was N2.9 billion giving unexplained N456 million in the personnel Account cashbook.
“The Chief Registrar has been requested to reconcile the difference and forward the reconciliation for audit verification.”
But the Federal High Court in a written response said “In the personnel cashbook, judges’ and staff salaries are usually prepared separately, these figures are summed up under corresponding line -items in the transcript.
“The total sum of closing balance as extracted from personnel cashbook of 2015 is N3b.
“The sum picked from February to July were the closing balances only while omitting the judges closing balances.
“These omission amount to the differences observed by the Auditors.”
Not satisfied with the presentation of Federal High Court, Senator Urhogide asked the FHC to submit its personnel cashbook for the committee to look at it.
All efforts by the officials of Federal High Court, led by the Chief Accountant of the Federal High Court, Kazeem Awoyemi.
to defend the unexplained N456 million were not acceptable to the lawmakers during the public hearimg.
In the same vein, the Chairman of Senate Committee on Public Account has said the Office of the Auditor General of Federation has no capacity to Audit the National budget effectively.
The Chairman lamented that there is a conspiracy against the Office of Auditor General to fail, adding that there is the need to push the Accountant General of Federation to submit its report to the Office.
He stated this during an interactive session with Paradigm Leadership Support Initiatives, a civil society organisation.
The Committee also queried the Federal High Court for payment of N18 million that was meant for 38 officers into a single account.
It was stated in the query that there was no evidence that 37 other officers were actually paid by the Federal High Court.
The Official of High Court admitted that it could be an error.
However all concerned officers were paid..
But Senator Biodun Olujinmi kicked against the defence of the Federal High Court, saying no judge will tolerate this mistake.