Reps summon Amaechi, NPA management over N166b funds, others


The House of Representatives has summoned the Transportation Minister Rotimi Amaechi and the management of the Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) over N166,685,929,000 revenue that accrued to the authority as at December 31, 2016 but was not properly captured in the statement of account of the agency.

They are also to explain the cost of services rendered to the NPA, which amounted to about N103.996 billion, including channels and water ways maintenance (N65.130 billion) and Port and Quays Expenses (N38.412 billion).

The minister and the agency’s management were initially expected to appear yesterday before the House Committee on Public Account but were said to have pleaded for another date.

They were reportedly given July 8 to appear before the committee.

It was learnt that they are expected to respond to audit queries contained in the comments of the Auditor General of the Federation (AuGF) on the group financial statement of the NPA for 2016.

They are also expected to give a breakdown of the Ports and Quays Services income, stating the income from each of the services, scheduled oil terminal dues, details of pilotage and service boats and the nature of rental services offered and the rates applied to them.

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Besides, the AuGF said both parties are expected to answer questions from the lawmakers, giving a breakdown of maintenance, budgetary provisions and evidence of work done on the channels and waterways as “examination of the accounts revealed that the channels and waterways maintenance rose from N44.427 billion in 2015 to N64.130 billion in 2016, an increase of over N20 billion.

The comments suggest that the NPA incurred about N38.412 billion as service charge on the Ports and Quays and demanded that the management of the authority provide details on how the charges were incurred and to explain what they meant by the term “others” for which about N4.7 billion was spent.

The AuGF said further examination of the accounts of the NPA revealed that Intels Integrated Services Limited was overpaid its commission by N2.099 billion.

Amaechi and the NPA management are also to explain what happened to the dividend of N643.006 million received from their joint venture partners as well as interest income of about N97.8 million and N28.7 million, being the interest from bank deposits and interest on loan and receivables.

Other queries against the NPA include administrative expenses of N61 billion, which include professional charges of N638 million, donation and subscription of N1.88 billion, exchange loss of N7.3 billion, defined benefit expenses of N11.4 billion and director’s remuneration of N4.2 million.

The AuGF’s query, signed by Adolphus Aghughu and dated May 24, 2021, also identified what it called understatement of depreciation charges amounting to N6.4 billion.

He stressed that “the provision made against eight classes of property amounted to N4.472 billion as against N10.891 million arrived at during vetting”.

The AuGF added: “If, however, the under-provision of depreciation was attributable to assets which have been fully written down, the nominal values at which such assets were retained in the books should be disclosed.

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