Contrary to the expectations of many Nigerians that Mrs Husseina Mohammed, a civil servant in Kogi state attached to the Teaching Service Commission will be compensated for her honesty in returning the sum of N1.8M mistakenly paid into her account amid the current hardship, the state government has issued her a query for allegedly misinforming the public about the excess salary mistakenly paid into her account.
The sanction is coming through the instruction given by the State Auditor General Alhaji Yusuf Okala who noted that Mrs Mohammed misinformed the public that she had returned the money to the state treasury even when she did not received any alert to confirm such transactions.
The Auditor General explained that the officer only returned N1.6M on 3rd July this year out of the N1.8M she claimed to have returned six weeks earlier, saying “the information has caused confusion in the system”.
He also directed that her salary be put on hold over the wrong information she gave the committee.
Earlier, the chairman Salary Reconciliation Committee, John Alayi explained that N1,813,186.98 was paid in excess to Mrs Mohammed because the statement from Teaching service commission mistakenly placed her on level sixteen while she was actually on grade level nine.
According to him, “the committee calculated the difference between grade level nine and grade level sixteen and paid the supposed arrears to the officers account but later discovered that one Hussein Mohammed also a staff of the Teaching Service Commission (TSC) was the one on grade level sixteen and not Mrs Husseina Mohammed.”
It was reported that , Mrs Mohammed said she received an alert for the excess salary and immediately filled a teller for the transfer to the state treasury on 22nd May, 2017.
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Meanwhile, the family of Mrs Husseinna Mohammed have expressed disappointment on the latest development coming from the state government insisting that the allegation against her has brought disgrace to the family.
It was also gathered from a close family source that Mrs Husseina Mohammed has been barred from speaking to the press or risk further punishment from the Government.
It was also learnt from a family source that, the said money was paid to the state coffers but were surprised that weeks later the cashier who performed the transaction failed to confirm that a particular digit was missing in the account number which the money was paid in.
” We are surprised that they are coming up with this at this time that the couple honourably returned money mistakenly paid into their account. The husband has not been paid for more than 15 Months yet they didn’t bother to withhold the huge sum of money despite the current hardship.
” This family barely feed three square meal just because of the harsh economy and the non-payment of salary in Kogi state. From what I know, they have been surviving through the wive even though the husband is also working with the state government.”
“Are we supposed to blame them or blame the cashier?. The government should also blame their personnel for this defects instead of suffering an innocent soul when she made the state proud. It is unfortunate that they are getting this at this time instead of being honoured for their honesty. ”
“Going by what is happening, if something of such happens again, people will be scared to come out and return such money because they don’t want to be disgraced. The news is everywhere now that they have issued her a query and her salary be placed on hold. Let be sincere, if you are the one, will you be happy? Am really disappointed I must confess.” The family source stated.
It would be recalled that in June during an interview with a journalist in Lokoja, Mrs Mohammed said that she returned N 1,813,186.98 to the state coffers credited to her account.
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She earlier explained how the money entered into her account. “One morning, while shopping, my phone beeped, indicating a text message. Upon opening the folder containing the SMS, I saw that my salary account domiciled in Zenith Bank, Lokoja Branch had been credited with N1,813,186.98 The text message stated that it was my salary for the month of March 2017.”
Shocked, Mrs Mohammed told reporters that she read the message over and over again. Aside reading the message repeatedly, she took her time to count the figures displayed in the message. After a while, she abandoned the materials she had come to buy and found her way home.
On getting home, she narrated her experience to her husband. After a brief interaction, they decided to refund the money, saying that it was the right thing to do. Her husband, an employee of the TSC in Lokoja, was one of those affected by the just concluded screening exercise in the state. He disclosed that for 15 months, he had not received any salary from the government.