By Emman Ovuakporie & Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA—THE House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on Insurance investigating alleged infractions and misappropriation of funds in Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs, weekend, threatened to issue an arrest warrant on the Comptroller-General, CG, of Nigerian Customs Service, NCS, Col. Hamid Ali, retd, if he failed to honour the invitation to appear before the committee on Wednesday.
Col. Ali had failed to honour the invitation to appear before the Adekunle Akinlade-led Committee probing allegations of wrongdoings between insurance outfits and MDA’s from 2013 – 2015.
The committee’s investigations had revealed that documents obtained on insurance dealings by the Nigerian Customs Service allegedly showed that it paid out about N250 million commission to Fortis Insurance Brokers, in defiance of laid down rules guiding the insurance sector during the period under review.
But the management of Fortis brokers, last week, wrote to the committee refuting its alleged participation in the insurance of NCS and even denied receiving any commission from Customs.
Infuriated that the Customs boss failed to appear before the adhoc committee after it sent an invitation physically to him and even taking advertorials in national newspapers, chairman of the committee said Ali’s action sent a wrong signal to the parliament where government officials ignored invitations to render stewardship of their positions and explain reasons for infractions in some areas.
He said the committee was committed to ensuring that the right things were done and would make sure those saddled with responsibilities were held accountable, no matter their positions.
He said: “Monies have been paid out and we discovered infractions. Customs confirmed the receipt of the letters, why not oblige with the request? ”