State governors draw battle line with NNPC over unremitted funds
[5/17, 8:27 PM] nasirdambatta: The National Economic Council (NEC) has confirmed that the N526 billion and 21 billion dollars was under-paid to the federation account by some Federal Government revenue generating agencies between 2010 and 2015 including the NNPC.
Gov. Ibrahim Dankwambo of Gombe state made the disclosure while briefing State House correspondents after the meeting of the Council, which was presided over by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo at the Council Chamber of the presidential villa, Abuja.
He said the affected agencies which included Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and 15 others were exposed following the presentation of the report of the technical audit of the agencies to the NEC by KPMG.
Dankwambo said that NEC’s Ad hoc Committee which he chaired with members including governors of Edo, Kaduna, Akwa Ibom, Lagos and the Finance Minister had recommended refund of the amounts under-paid.
According to the governor, NEC has agreed to extend the audit to June 2017.
“One of the resolutions of NEC today is to extend the audit to June 2017. So, the audit will continue for the remaining agencies.
“It is NNPC, NPDC, DPR, Customs, Federal Internal Revenue Services, NPA, Maritime Authority, all the revenue generating agencies and the details of the infringement are contained in the report.
“Because it is voluminous report there are a lot of items that are there.
“The most important decision that was taken is that a sub-committee will be set up which will be an arm of the legal committee of NEC that will look into details of these kinds of infringements and make sure that those issues that are criminal and require prosecution will be handled by office of the Attorney General of the Federation,’’ he added.
He disclosed that the council had resolved to pursue strengthening of the NNPC governance structure to prevent further recurrence of such gross under-remittance by the NNPC and other revenue generating agencies.
In his contribution, Gov. Rauf Aregbesola of Osun said the council commended the courage of the President and Vice President as Chair of Council in ensuring the probe of Federal Government Agencies and completing the audit report.
According to him, this has gone a long way to promote transparency and the anti-corruption efforts of the Buhari administration.
Minister of Budget and National Planning Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma, updated the Council on the just concluded Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) Focus.
He said the ERGP Focus Labs were conducted successfully and the outcomes presented to the public last Tuesday, May 15.
He told council members that the labs identified 164 projects spread across the six geopolitical zones of the country, saying that the outcomes indicated that over 500,000 jobs were likely to be created by 2020.
He announced that more labs would be conducted in due course for other sectors and recommended that states should adopt the same model and commended all stakeholders for making the labs a success.
“The labs process was found to be extremely rewarding exercise and stakeholders who attended benefited,’’ he said.
A statement released by the secretariat of the council indicated that the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, reported to council that the balance in the Excess Crude Account (ECA) as at May 14, stood at N1,830, 682, 945.
She also reported that the current balance in the Stabilisation Account as at May 14, stood at N15, 725,456,963, while the current balance in the Natural Resources Development Fund as at May 14, 2018 was N116, 104,644,763.