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HIV Funding scandal in Nigeria
  "N900m HIV funds scandal rocks NACA, CCM"
THE Global Fund, one of the main financiers of the fight against HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, may have concluded arrangements to suspend further disbursement of fund to the programme in the country over what it considers insincerity on the part of the Country's Coordinating Mechanism (CCM).
According to the Fund, over $6.2 million (about N900 million) could not be accounted for by the Nigerian group. The CCM was headed by Dr. Abdusalami Nasidi, of the Federal Ministry of Health, while the National Action Committee on AIDS, headed by Professor Babatunde Oshotimehin, was the principal recipient.
This was revealed at a press conference held during the ongoing 2005 edition of the International Conference on AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections in Africa (ICASA) by an advocacy group, Treatment Action Movement (TAM), headed by Mrs. Rolake Odetoyinbo.
According to the group, the Global Fund decided to remove Nigeria from the list of beneficiaries because the handlers of the fund could not give satisfactory explanation on how $6.2 million, already disbursed to Nigeria, was spent.
Global Fund had, in a letter with reference number ARF III/RS.382, addressed to the CCM chairman, Dr. Nasidi, entitled Programme Grant Agreement NGA-102-G01/NGA-102-G03, and made available to Nigerian Tribune by TAM, queried the sincerity of the Nigerian CCM over a range of issues.
The board of Global Fund is expected to decide the fate of the country during its meeting scheduled for December 12. However, investigations conducted by the Nigerian Tribune on the fate of the nation has shown that hope of a reversal was dim as the board was reported to have adopted the recommendations of the secretariat, especially in cases like that of Nigeria where prima facie case had been established.
Responding to the allegation, the NACA boss, Professor Oshotimehin, whose organisation was fingered in the fraud, described the allegation as a mere rumour which lacks merit.
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