Zulum Alleges Fraud In UN, INGO’s Handling Of Donor Funds for Borno IDPs
Babagana Zulum, Governor of Borno State, Northeast Nigeria, on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 alleged that a large chunk of funds received by the UN and other international non-governmental organisations (INGOs) providing humanitarian assistance in the troubled region, hardly reaches the target population because they are corruptly diverted.
Zulum claimed that he has evidence that at least 30 per cent of donor funds meant for persons affected by the armed conflict in the Lake Chad region are being cornered by those assigned to manage the funds.
The UN had said that it has received donor funding of over $3 billion from 2017 to date and most of the funds were spent in providing life-saving assistance to victims of the conflict.
The governor made the revelation while hosting a courtesy call session to his office in Maiduguri, the state capital, by the diplomatic heads of the United Kingdom and the United States of America. The envoys were in Borno State alongside other diplomats from E.U. countries to assess the humanitarian and development priorities in northeast Nigeria.
Governor Zulum, irked by the depth of corruption going on within the heavily funded humanitarian business in the Northeast, had to report the matter to governments of US and the U.K.
The U.S. and the U.K., according to data obtained from the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) have remained the topmost donors in the humanitarian response plan (HRP) for Nigeria since 2014.
The UNOCHA has appealed for $1.01 billion in its 2021 HRP to be used in Nigeria. So far, the U.S. government has donated $138.8 million, the highest, while the U.K. which is the fourth in donors rank contributed $24 million.
Mary Beth Leonard, U.S. Ambassador and the U.K.’s High Commissioner, Catriona Laing may have been shocked by the official revelations made by the governor of Borno state.
Zulum told the envoys that their donations can only reach the targeted population when the UN and INGOs transparently carry the Borno State Government along in all their spending and programme.