Osinbajo Panel Asks Senate for Documents on PINE Probe

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  •   Again, Senate c’ttee summons Babachir

Damilola Oyedele in Abuja

The Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo-led committee probing the alleged mismanagement of funds meant for humanitarian assistance in the North-east, has written to the Senate ad hoc committee which probed the allegations, requesting it to submit documents relevant to the irregularities and due process violations under Presidential Initiative on the North-East (PINE).

The letter, which was addressed to the chairman of the ad hoc Senate committee, Senator Ahmed Sani and was dated April 21, 2017, also requested for the committee’s report.

Signed by the Deputy Chief of Staff in the Office of the Vice-President, Mr. Ade Ipaye, the letter said: “You may please recall that on the 19th of April 2017, His Excellency, the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari, constituted a presidential committee to enquire into allegations of due process violation in the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on the North East (PINE).

“Following the inaugural meeting of the said committee, I am directed by His Excellency, the Vice President and Chairman of Committee, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) to formerly request the submission of relevant documentation including the report of your committee’s deliberations on the same subject for appropriate consideration by the presidential committee.”

This is just as the Senate ad hoc committee yesterday also invited the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. David Babachir Lawal, who was suspended by Buhari last week over his alleged involvement in the violation of due process in the award of contracts under PINE, which he chaired.

He is scheduled to appear before the committee at 10a.m. today.

Lawal was indicted by an interim report of the Senate committee last December for inflated and fictitious contracts amounting to N2.5 billion.

He was alleged to have awarded a N220 million tree-cutting contract to his company, Rholavision Engineering Limited in contravention of public sector rules barring government officials from awarding contracts to companies in which they have an interest.