By Henry Umoru
ABUJAâ€”Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Mr. Humphrey Abah has denied reports credited to him that the administration of erstwhile President Olusegun Obasanjo wasted N15 billion.
Mr. Abah, who disowned the reports while addressing newsmen in Abuja, wondered why he could be so misquoted at a meeting held under a closed door without the presence of any pressman.
He explained that the Chairman of the House of Representative Committee on Commerce and Industry, Hon. Solomon Agidani enquired into the allegations of the missing N15billion from NAC and Sugar Councils funds which are two parastatals under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry,
â€œMy response to that question was, I have not come across this information before, the two parastatals have never brought a report like this to us. And I immediately directed my Perm Secr, Dr. Abubakar Mohammed to write to CBN, Sugar Council and NAC to find information about the funds.
â€œAt no time did I talk about any amount of money been squandered during the visit by the House of Representatives members. I never mentioned that money was missing. The minister pointed out that he could not have uttered that statement without making some clarifications from the relevant agencies.
Abah said even though the meeting was behind closed door where the author was never present, he had expected the writers to come to him to cross check the veracity of that statement between Tuesday when the meeting was held before Friday when the paper went to press.