The House of Representatives’ Public Accounts Committee has received report of the Auditor General of the Federation (OAuGF) on the activities of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading (NBET) Plc.
The chairman of the committee, Hon. Wole Oke (PDP, Osun) confirmed the receipt of the reports yesterday. He said: “Yes, we now have the report of the Auditor General of the Federation on the NDDC from 2013 to 2018, as well NBET from 2017 to 2019, respectively.”
Oke assured that both reports would be given accelerated consideration upon resumption from the annual vacation.
The details of the audit queries was contained in the report titled: ‘Special periodic checks on the activities and programmes of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), for the period 1st January 2013 – 30th June, 2018’, which was transmitted to the chairman of the public accounts committee via a covering letter with Ref. No: OAuGF/GEN.CORR./ SSA/50 and dated 18th August, 2020.
Some of the queries issued in the report include: payment of medical checkup expenses to part-time board members – N459.350 million; excessive payment of imprest to the Executive Board members – N1,358,300,000; engagement and payment of external solicitors without the consent of the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation – N1,582,986,030; irregularities in the award contract for logistic and consultation services – N199,474,160.50; and award of emergency contracts without stating the contract prices – N3,001,517,063.27.
Others include: Doubtful commissioning of consultants for the studies and design projects after the award and execution of the relevant projects – N485,128,179.79; payments of rent to a legal advocate on a property that belongs to River State Government, but released to the Federal Government house the NDDC Headquarters – N1,225,000,000; payment of rent to retired generals for regional security surveillance of NDDC projects without evidence of service delivery – N698,128,550 as well as inappropriate payments of tenement rate without valid computation in line with the relevant tax laws – N725,460,000; appointments of special and personal assistants for members of Governing Board and payment of their salaries and allowances as government expenses – N1,005,743,015.14.
The OAuGF also queried the N1,714,074,999.93 expended on Partnership on Entrepreneurship Development Scheme without specific benefits or procedure for the recoupment of NDDC investment in the partnership; N190,956,527.75 payment of compensation through Chris Oghene Omoru & Co without evidence of job execution; N86,531,503 irregular payment of compensation; N2,527,000,000 irregularities in the supply of 3,852 doses of Hepatitis B vaccines and 1,570 doses of typhoid vaccines (28) and supply of Lassa Fever kits in (23 Lots) to NDDC warehouse in Port Harcourt and distribution, transportation and storage (5 Lots); N949,220,780 contract on dredging/desilting of Imo River, Onuimo and Ihitte Uboma (Lot 2) Ihitte Uboma, Imo State and N994,415,000 contract for the dredging/ desilting of Obano-Okposha Oguta Lake Waterway (Lot 2) Imo State.
In the same vein, the OAuGF also forwarded the report on the Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading (NBET) Plc.’s Audit Monitoring & Evaluation of capital projects and programmes from June 2017 to June 2018.
The queries include non-submission of annual audited financial statements for six years 2014 – 2019; payments for contract not executed – N20,952,000, among others.