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Reps to address non-remittances by agencies

By The Citizen
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The House of Representatives in its bid to ensure accountability in government has begun efforts to block revenue leakages as well as address the alleged non-remittances by government-owned corporations and agencies.

Chairman, House Committee on Finance, Abdulmumin Jibril, who fielded questions from journalists at the weekend, gave the indication that the draft amendment bills to the Acts establishing the affected bodies were ready and would soon be presented before the parliament.

He further disclosed that efforts were also on to repeal and re-enact the Fiscal Responsibility Act, 2007, especially to give the Fiscal Responsibility Commission power of enforcement.

'The biggest challenge to us as a committee is the NNPC. It has never remitted a dime to the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation,' Jibril stated, stressing that the committee discovered that from 2009, the Corporation generated over N6 trillion, but Group Managing Director was compelled to appear only when a threat of bench warrant of arrest was issued.

Rather than defend allegations of non-remittance of revenue, he said NNPC was engaging in accusing the committee of being out to embarrass it, pursuing a hidden agenda and that the committee investigation was inconclusive before it made its report public.

According to him, the committee's efforts had begun to yield positive results as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had remitted N80 billion of the N95 billion it withheld, and the Nigerian Ports Authority had paid over N20 billion of its withheld revenue, vowing that NNPC and all other agencies 'must pay.'