N33bn fraud: Reps seek sack, pros­e­cu­tion of NEMA boss NEMA kicks, rejects House re­port

Daily Trust - - NEWS - By Oz­ibo Oz­ibo & Mau­reen Onochie

The House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives yes­ter­day asked Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari to dis­miss and pros­e­cute the Di­rec­tor­Gen­eral of Na­tional Emer­gency Man­age­ment Agency (NEMA), Mustapha Mai­haja, for di­vert­ing N33­bil­lion North East Food Se­cu­rity Emer­gency In­ter­ven­tion Fund.

The res­o­lu­tion fol­lowed the con­sid­er­a­tion of re­port of the House Com­mit­tee on Emer­gency and Dis­as­ter Pre­pared­ness chaired by Ali Isa (PDP, Gombe) on the “need to in­ves­ti­gate the vi­o­la­tion of pub­lic trust in NEMA and ap­prove rec­om­men­da­tions therein.”

The re­port and rec­om­men­da­tions were dis­closed in a Com­mit­tee of the Whole chaired by Deputy Speaker, Yusuf La­sun (APC, Osun).

“Based on the in­ves­ti­ga­tion con­ducted by the Com­mit­tee, it has been es­tab­lished that the Fed­eral Govern­ment of Nige­ria lost over N33 bil­lion as a re­sult of mis­man­age­ment or out­right em­bez­zle­ment oc­ca­sioned by the ac­tions or in­ac­tions of the NEMA DG, Mustapha Yi­nusa Mai­haja.

“It is con­se­quently rec­om­mended that Mr. Mai­haja be re­lieved of his du­ties by Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari and be handed over to the rel­e­vant agen­cies for pros­e­cu­tion,” the re­port read in part.

It also rec­om­mended that the In­de­pen­dent Cor­rupt Prac­tices and other Re­lated Of­fences Com­mis­sion (ICPC) and the Eco­nomic and Fi­nan­cial Crimes Com­mis­sion (EFCC) re­cover an­other N1.15bn from the NEMA DG.

The re­port also con­demned the in­ef­fi­ciency of NEMA and the Min­istry of Bud­get and Na­tional Plan­ning for the long de­lay in clear­ing 6,779 met­ric tonnes of rice do­nated by the Chi­nese govern­ment to the In­ter­nally Dis­placed Per­sons (IDPs) in the North East.

It said six NEMA Di­rec­tors, namely Ak­in­bola Ha­keem, Al­has­san Nuhu, Emenike Umesi, Mo­hammed Kan­nar, Mam­man Ibrahim and Deji Ganiyu be im­me­di­ately re­in­stated by the agency and all their en­ti­tle­ments paid.

On the re­ceipt and uti­liza­tion of N1.6bn meant for flood vic­tims, the Com­mit­tee di­rected fur­ther probe of Mai­haja and the re­cov­ery of N700m from him by rel­e­vant agen­cies.

Mean­while, NEMA has re­jected the re­port of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives which in­dicted it of poor man­age­ment of re­lief items meant for 16 states.

It said some of the find­ings and con­clu­sions pre­sented by the House Com­mit­tee did not re­flect the facts and doc­u­ments placed be­fore it by NEMA.

The agency made its po­si­tion known in a state­ment last night.

“The House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, at its sit­ting of 8th Novem­ber 2018, which was aired live on the Nige­rian Tele­vi­sion Au­thor­ity re­ceived the Re­port of the House Com­mit­tee on Emer­gency and Pre­pared­ness Re­sponse on the al­leged vi­o­la­tion of pub­lic trust against the Na­tional Emer­gency Man­age­ment Agency (NEMA).

“We were shocked to hear some of the find­ings and con­clu­sions pre­sented by the Com­mit­tee on the is­sues, which did not re­flect the facts and doc­u­ments placed be­fore it by NEMA.

“While we shall in due course be mak­ing a more com­pre­hen­sive re­sponse to all the points made, it is most im­por­tant to clar­ify the fol­low­ing:

“On the Port Clear­ance and Trans­porta­tion of Emer­gency Food As­sis­tance by Chi­nese Govern­ment, the Fed­eral Govern­ment re­ceived a to­tal of 6,779MT of Rice for IDPs in the North East as do­na­tion by the Chi­nese Govern­ment. This amounted to 271 con­tain­ers, which ar­rived Apapa Ports be­tween June and Oc­to­ber 2017.”

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