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Presidency, EFCC, ICPC, and AGF were given subsidy probe report – Reps insist
EFCC, ICPC, and AGF were given subsidy probe report – Reps insist
MEMBERS of the House of Representatives yesterday insisted copies of the report of the Farouk Lawan-led ad-Hoc Committee that probed the management of fuel subsidy regime were sent to relevant agencies, including the Presidency.
Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Zakari Mohammed, said there are documents to back his claim.
He said: “The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offenses Commission (ICPC) as well as the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) have gotten copies of the probe report and for anybody to say he did not get the report is strange.
“We have receipts or acknowledgment of the delivery of the report, so we are not aware of any agency of government that is supposed to and have not gotten the report.
“I am confirming that we have sent the report to the appropriate offices and we are expecting that we will be on the same page that the have said and re-echoed on the implementation of the outcome of that investigation.”
Mohammed allayed the fears over the apparent inactivity of the ad-hoc Committee on Ethics and Privileges, that was mandated by the lower chamber of the National Assembly to investigate the dramatis personae involved in the bribery allegations against the House Committee on Capital Market by the Director-General of the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms. Arunma Oteh.
The ad-Hoc Committee on the near collapse of capital market and the Committee on Ethic and Privileges were raised on March 20, following the stepping down of the Herman Hembe-led Comiitee on Capital Market.
Ms Oteh alleged Hembe and other members of the committee demanded for bribe from the SEC.
Chairman of the Ethics and Privileges Committee, Gambo Musa and his deputy, Toby Okechukwu, who were members of the ad-Hoc Committee on Capital stepped down temporarily from the Ethics Committee to avoid prejudice while investigating their colleagues as well as the key players in the capital market.
But Mohammed said the embattled SEC director-general would still have to appear before the Ethics Committee when it begins its assignment as she still has questions to answer.
Ms Oteh succeeded in getting the Ibrahim El-Sudi-led ad-Hoc Committee probing SEC’s operations when she wrote in that she should be excluded from further physical appearance at the public hearing.
Ms Oteh had in the two-page letter called for the understanding of the committee “to respond to any additional questions that you may have in writing, being that you had already given the commission an opportunity to present and interact with the committee for five hours yesterday.
She complained of appearing at the hearings on several occasions since the commencement of the saga without being taken on.
Her letter reads: “As you would recall, the Securities and Exchange Commission had dutifully and diligently entered appearance at the hearing in spite of the several rescheduling at the instance of the committee since the 17th of April. This has forced me and the commission to cancel and in several cases rescheduling important official commitments.
“I therefore crave your indulgence to permit me to respond to any additional questions that you may have in writing, being that you had already given the commission an opportunity to present and interact with the committee for five hours yesterday.”
According to Mohammed who affirmed that Ms Oteh, alongside other key participants in the initial investigation by the Committee on Capital Market and Other institutions, the Samson Osagie-led adHoc committee has not kicked off its investigation due to the on-going probe of the capital market.
He said: “I want to assure that the Samson Osagie committee will start its work as soon as the Capital Market committee winds up.
“The committee has not started its work because it is about behavior and we do not want to jeopardize the work of the El-Sudi committee by commencing another probe simultaneously. Moreover, key actors in the markets, like Ms. Arunma Oteh as well as members of the last committee would be invited and we do not want excuses.
“So, I want to assure that the Committee has not started its work but it will, as soon as the capital market ad hoc committee concludes its assignment”.
He also stated that the House is not averse to the independence of state legislatures
Mohammed said: “If the state legislators felt that they want independence, then they should use the opportunity of the constitutional review to present their case and if Nigerians are favorable to it, so be it.
“We believe that the right thing must be done. The Sixth Assembly attempted it and nearly got it through but lost it by a state but this time around, the decimal has changed. Numbers have changed but posterity will not forgive us if we see these things and fold our arms.
“For instance, I am sure if we are getting our funds from the Villa, we might not be able to most of the things we are doing and we think what happens here should be transferred to the states and we believe it will reduce corruption unlike some governors running their states like personal estates.
“We believe the state legislatures should be able to function. This is anther opportunity on their lap and they should utilise it and I believe this time around, we should be able to get it right”.
He also absolved the House of insinuation of conspiracy over the removal of immunity clause for the President and state governors, saying, “There is no conspiracy of silence on immunity clause.
He said: “It is our opinion that since it is a constitutional matter, if it is the opinion of Nigerians that it should go, of course it would go by amendment.
“Moreover the opportunity of the constitutional review should be seized so that Nigerians should come up with their reasons why it has to go whether to stem corruption or abuse of office. Where the majority put its voice, we will definitely go with it.”
Presidency, EFCC, ICPC, and AGF were given subsidy probe report – Reps
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