House of Reps Summons Amaechi, NPA Over N166billion Controversy
- The House of Representatives has sent for the minister of transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi
- The minister is expected to appear with senior officials of the Nigeria Ports Authority before the federal lawmakers
- The lawmakers are querying several expenses, services rendered, maintenance costs, and other financial issues concerning the NPA
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FCT, Abuja - A report by ThisDay newspapers indicates that the House of Representatives has summoned the minister of transportation, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, and the management of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA).
According to the report, the minister and officials of the NPA are expected to give details of the revenue accruing to the agency as of December 31, 2016, amounting to N166,685,929,000.
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Lawmakers to probe the financial records of the NPA
The lawmakers also stated that the monies were not properly captured in the statement of account of the agency.
They are also to explain the cost of services rendered to the NPA amounting to about N103.996 billion, including channels and waterways maintenance, N65.130 billion; and port and quays expenses of N38.412 billion.
The minister and the authority are further expected to respond to audit queries contained in the comments of the Auditor General of the Federation on the group financial statement of the NPA for 2016.
Other queries against the NPA include administrative expenses of N61 billion, which include professional charges of N638 million; donation and subscription of N1.88 billion; exchange loss of N7.3 billion; defined benefit expenses of N11.4 billion and director’s remuneration of N4.2 million.
Hearing all sides before the verdict
The Guardian newspaper reports that the summon was issued by the House of Representatives committee on public accounts.
The committee is led by Honourable Wole Oke from Osun state, who asked that the minister and his subordinates appear before them on Thursday, July 8 in the spirit of a fair hearing.
Recall that Amaechi last month inaugurated an 11-member panel of inquiry to probe the leadership of Hadiza Bala-Usman, the recently suspended managing director of the NPA.
The 11-man panel is headed by Suleiman Auwal, the director of maritime services in the ministry of transportation.
The panel is expected to thoroughly look into the administrative policies and strategies employed by Bala-Usman with a view to ascertaining compliance with extant laws from 2016.
In a related development, the Centre for Public Trust (CPT) has accused Bala-Usman of disrespecting President Muhammadu Buhari.
The group made the claim in a statement sent to Legit.ng on Saturday, May 8, and signed by its director of publicity, Adebola Mahmud.
The CPT accused the suspended NPA boss of making disparaging and disdainful remarks directed at the president using the media.