By James Emejo in Abuja
The House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts, has directed the Executive Secretary, Nigeria Investment Promotion Council (NIPC), Yewande Sadiku, to return the sum of N477 million, being Â un-remitted Â Internally Generated Revenue, (IGR) realised between 2013 and 2014 to the treasury.
The Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Kingsley Chinda (PDP, Â Rivers), further directed that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), to immediately arrest and prosecute the officers in charge of NIPC during the period under review.Â
The decision followed a query raised by the office of the Auditor General of the Federation (AuGF) in 2013 on the failings of the Council.Â
The committee had during the interrogation of NIPC top management uncovered infractions which attracted the queried and insisted it could not be ignored.Â
But NIPC boss, Sadiku admitted the infractions were true but quickly added Â she was not in charge when the violations occurred at the council.Â
Â She said: â€œAt a particular period, the council was over debited with about N290 million and the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) office have promised to make a refund.
â€œThis must have probably accounted for why there is a shortfall of N477 million and when a refund is made amendments could be effected.â€
She was however countered by the Deputy Chairman of the committee, Hon. Ibrahim Baba, (APC, Bauchi), who said that â€œthe Council is not a private company and the money in question belongs to the federal government because what you remitted is actually 25 per cent of your annual earnings.â€
Chinda, however, asked the ES to revel the identities of the officers in charge of the council when the infractions were committed.
The chairman also demanded for reasons why the money was not remitted as and when due into government purse.
To this, the NIPC boss said: â€œI canâ€™t explain why they failed to remit the money but as at that period, Mustafa Bello, Mrs. Saratu Umar and Mr. Sadiq Hassan who acted for only 3 months were in charge.â€
Chinda, at this point said: â€œN477 million being IGR for 2013-2014 was not remitted to the CRF and we have no other option than to uphold the audit report.
â€œWe are also referring this matter to the anti-graft commission to further dig deep into this matter and report to the clerk of this committee within 60days.â€