BPE fails to audit account since 2010
The Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE) confessed yesterday at a public hearing organised by the Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC) that its account has not been audited since 2010.
The revelation followed a heated debate between the two agencies of government over what the FRC described as “the seeming lack of cooperation and desire to respond to issues, letters and reminders” by the BPE.
The BPE is charged with the responsibility of implementing the Nigerian policy on privatisation and commercialisation.
The Acting Chairman of the FRC, Barrister Victor Muruako, who expressed his concern over the posture of the BPE, said: “BPE is yet to remit an outstanding operating surplus of over N81 million been the financial operating surplus of the 2007.
“They are withholding their financial statement for whatever reason. It is condemnable and not acceptable to this commission.”
But in a swift reaction to the chairman’s comment, the Director General of the BPE Benjamin Ezra-Dikki raised issues with their inclusion in the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2007 and accused the FRC of not giving the BPE’s explanation requisite understanding.
He said: “The Bureau remitted N200 million in the same 2007 and we have been asked to come up with another N81 million, there is no operating surplus. We don’t pay operating surplus. Nobody has answered our submission and we are been called to make the same submission again.”
However, the presentation of the BPE took a dramatic turn when the representative of the Director General, Sanusi Abdu Ali, who is the head of Central Account of the BPE, in a frantic effort to justify the non presentation of the 2010 to 2013 financial report, drew reference of non compliance by other government agencies.
The Director General said: “Our accounts are supposed to be approved by the coordinating minister of the economy as well as the vice president who is the chairman of the privatisation council to whom we report. These are very busy people and that has affected the readiness of these accounts.
“We are all government agencies and we know how these things work. It is in the public domain that an agency of government has not audited its account in the last 10 years. We are also operating within the law, let’s be realistic about this.”
But, in his response, the FRC Chairman said: “That is blackmail, the issue of the vice president should not come in, and His Excellency should be kept out of this. We will not be intimidated by the paddling of the Vice President’s name. The BPE should do its job. The Vice President and the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, are also chairs and members of the Debt Management Office, and that is one of the best complying agencies we have.” during the festive period to guarantee adequate supply of petrol.
Olaworesaidthatadditionalpetrol of 77.5,000 metric tonnes which represents about 35 truck of 33,000 litres of petrol is billed to be discharged next week.
He said that about 95,000 metric tonnes of petrol is also expected at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation depots to ease flow of products within the nooks and crannies of the country.