The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, on Sunday said that the whistle-blower who informed the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of the N13bn recovered from an Ikoyi apartment in Lagos would be paid this month.
Adeosun said this in a statement issued by her Special Adviser on Media and Communications, Mr. Oluyinka Akintunde.
She denied claims that the government had withheld the funds due to any whistle-blower, adding that the delay in payment was caused by the administrative procedures that must be fulfilled before such funds were released.
The minister noted that the government had put in place detailed procedures for processing payments due under the whistle-blower policy.
She explained that the procedures were designed to prevent abuse and legal disputes and to ensure protection of the information providers.
The statement read in part, “The attention of the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has been drawn to media reports surrounding the payment to a whistle-blower, who provided the tips that led to the recovery of funds stashed away in a property in Ikoyi, Lagos State.
“The minister wishes to state unequivocally that the Federal Government has not withheld any funds due to any whistle-blower. The ministry has in place detailed procedures for processing payments due under the whistle-blower policy.
“The procedures were designed to prevent abuse and legal disputes, and to ensure protection of the information providers.”
It added, “It must be stated also that payments are made in monthly batches to ensure control and to protect the identity of information providers.
“To date, over 20 of such persons have been paid. From available records, the payment due on Ikoyi is among those being processed in the November batch, which will be released within the current month.”
Yakubu Galadima, the lawyer to the whistle-blower who informed the EFCC of the $43m, N23.2m and £27,800, totalling N13bn, recovered from an Ikoyi apartment, had on Saturday said his client was prepared to sue the Federal Government for fraud if he was not paid soon.