Thursday, 3 November 2016

Reps to probe BPE for alleged violations of fiscal laws

The House of Representatives yesterday resolved to investigate alleged breaches in certain provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007 by the Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE).

The contravention, according to the lawmakers include the agency’s failure to remit operational surplus of N81.8 million in 2007 into the federation account.

Adopting a motion by Abbas Tajudeen (APC-Kaduna), the house mandated its committees on privatization and commercialization and public accounts to inter-face with the BPE over the allegations and report back in four weeks.
Tajudeen had also pointed to BPE’s inability to provide audited accounts for the financial years 2012-2015.

He said the conduct of the BPE lacked probity, transparency and accountability.

The Minority Leader, Leo Ogor, called for fair hearing and recommended that the committee should investigate and come up with clear details on the matter and report back.

And for allegedly authorizing N25.250 million as donations in 2008 without appropriation, Transportation Minister, Mr. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, is to appear before the Committee on Public Accounts on a date yet to be communicated to explain the rationale for this.

According to the deputy chairman of the committee, Ibrahim Baba, he is to appear with the ministry’s budgetary appropriations for 2008 to determine whether there were provisions for the said donations in it or not.

The summon followed yesterday’s inability of the Director- General of Nigerian Maritime and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Mr. Dakuku Peterside, to back up his defence with necessary documents and to explain to the committee why the spending was made in 2005 when funding for it was contained in the 2008 budget.

The Auditor-General of the Federation (AGF), who accused NIMASA of the illicit spending in its 2010 report, requested that the money should immediately be refunded to the consolidated revenue account.

Peterside said the payments were in order as they were meant for settling services that were rendered to the agency.

Committee also yesterday questioned the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris over the missing of some rifles and cash exhibits amounting to N1.9 million.

According to the committee, chaired by Kingsley Chinda (PDP, Rivers), based on the report of AGF (2010 to 2013), four rifles were missing along with the cash exhibits with 55 queries raised against the Police during the period.


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