The Federal Government on Tuesday expressed determination to migrate the Military to the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) before December.
The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, said this during the meeting of the Continuous Audit Team of the Federal Government with the Military finance team in Abuja.
It can be recalled that the Federal Government had set up the Continuous Audit Team to look into the finances of Federal Government’s ministries, departments and agencies.
The team embarked on the audit of the military payroll following revelations during the trial of a former Chief of Defence Staff, Air Marshal Alex Badeh.
It was revealed at Badeh’s trail that the sum of N558.2 million was allegedly diverted monthly from the Nigeria Air Force account into private pockets.
“We do plan to enrol all our military payroll to IPPIS before the end of the year, but in the interim it is necessary to respond to allegations and revelations of excesses on the payroll.
“We want to investigate whether or not they are true and correct and also to ensure that whatever steps have been taken to block those leakages in future were effective and adequate.
“So, it is in this light that I discussed with the minister of defence the need to carry out an audit of the military payroll to improve the controls and make sure that every naira going to the military is for valid reasons,’’ she said.
Adeosun said the ministry was making efforts to quickly automate the payroll of all the branches of the armed forces to avoid such occurrences in future.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Mr Danjuma Sheni, assured the audit team of the ministry’s cooperation throughout the exercise.
“This initiative could not have come at a better time as the minister of defence and I am concerned about the revelations in the papers about certain activities concerning the payroll of the armed forces.
“Afterwards, we began a process which led us to the ministry of finance and we are very comfortable with the action that is being taken today,’’ he said.
For his part the Head of the Continuous Audit Team, Mr Mohammed Dikwa, said the team was also looking at enrolling the military into the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS).
He said this would help to keep proper accounts and effective tab of the resources of the Army, Navy and Air Force