The Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly has exonerated the Accountant General of Akwa Ibom State Pastor Uwem Andrew Essien by the ratification of the 2019 Financial Report/Audited Accounts of Akwa Ibom State Government.
Recall that the House had, at its plenary on December 8, 2020, set up an Adhoc Committee to investigate issues surrounding the withdrawal of the 2019 Statement and Accounts of the State Government by the Office of the Accountant General.
Chairman of the Adhoc Committee, Rt. Hon. (Sir) Udo Kieran Akpan, while presenting the Committee’s report, cited alleged expenditure of N4.864 billion on Toyota Prado Jeeps and expenditure of N5.04 billion on the maintenance of the state Aircraft by the Office of the Secretary to the State Government etc, as some of the issues investigated by the Committee.
Rt. Hon. (Sir) Udo Kieran Akpan revealed that the Office of the Accountant General, had on noticing errors in the Account already published by the Accountant General, withdrew the published Account and released a new version. He said the alarm raised by Akwa Ibom people on the issues investigated was in good faith and intended to hold the government accountable.
The Lawmaker noted that the Accountant General’s Office acted appropriately by noticing and correcting the errors but however warned that such errors should not be allowed to occur the second time. He said the audited accounts of the state government as passed by the House of Assembly on 4th June 2020 remain valid.
Subsequently, the House after considering the report at the Committee of the Whole, adopted the report, while the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Aniekan Bassey directed the Clerk of House, Mrs. Mandu Umoren to communicate the resolution of the House to the appropriate quarters. In the meantime, the House has adjourned Plenary to March 2, 2021.