By Tordue Salem – Abuja
The House of Representatives on Monday threatened to expose the amount of generated public funds unaccounted for by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC and several other unremitting agencies in the country.
Chairman of the House Public Accounts Committee, Rep. Wole Oke issued the threat at a public hearing on non-remittances, declared open by Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila.
The two-week public hearing on the probe of alleged “deliberate and reckless refusal by non-Treasury and Partially Funded Agencies to render their audited Accounts covering the period of 2014-2018 to the Auditor General of the federation”, was attended by over 50 agencies.
Rep. Gbajabiamila who was represented by Deputy Leader of the House of Representatives, Rep Peter Akpatson made it clear that henceforth it would no longer business as usual as the Ninth National Assembly would go all out to compel the defaulting MDAs to adhere strictly to the relevant provisions of the constitution and statutes to account for public funds appropriated to them.
Welcoming stakeholders to the Public Hearing, the Chairman of the Committee, Rep Wole Oke who lamented the lukewarm attitude of the MDAs in rendering accounts of the funds allocated to the over the years, rolled out the long list of the numbers of MDAs involved.
Rep Oke declared that the National Assembly would have no option than to publish the names of defaulting MDAs on the pages of the National Dailies as a wake-up call.
According to him, “the 9th Assembly is not a ‘Yes’ Assembly or ‘rubber stamp’ one, we will go all out to make all the MDAs to surrender accurate accounts appropriated to them over the years, it very disheartened when some Heads of the MDAs will dodging the Parliament when it comes to rendering of accounts, henceforth, it is not going be business as usual.
The investigation followed a Motion moved by the Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Rep. Sa’ad Abdullahi representing Ningi / Warji of Bauchi State.
Some of the defaulting agencies according to the Reps are: Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN; Federal Inland Revenue Services, FIRS; National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA; Nigeria Post Office, NIPOST; Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA; among others.