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ALLEGED N13B FRAUD: Reps threaten to issue warrant of arrest on PPPRA boss

OrderPaperToday- The House of Representatives Committee on Finance has threatened to issue a warrant of arrest for the Executive Secretary (ES) of Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Mr. Tony Okonkwo, if he fails to appear before it for the third time on March 30th.
Chairman of committee, Mr James Faleke, issued the threat on Tuesday after his committee refused to entertain the agency’s representative, Mr. Saidu Abdulkadiri, in the capacity of the ES.
The House committee is investigating the non-remittance of funds to the federation account by federal government  agencies.
Recall that it had threatened to order for the removal of the general manager of Finance (GMF), Mr Peter Joshua, of the same agency over alleged diversion of over N13 billion from funds generated from operations of the agency in 2014.
Previously, Joshua had represented the ES and informed the committee that in the year 2014, his agency generated the sum of N2.8 billion only, even though, according to the lawmakers, PPPRA made about N13 billion from 15k deducted from sales of every litre of petroleum products.
Joshua, however, had insisted that what his agency received from the actual revenue generated was only N2.8 billion, with a balance of over 11 billion still with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC and other marketers of petroleum products.
The lawmakers, dissatisfied with his submission, threatened to order his sack for shoddy management of finances due to government, while noting that PPPRA has been shortchanging the government and people of Nigeria for years.
The committee said it discovered that in 2014 alone, PPPRA was to pay as revenue the sum of N501.2 million to the consolidated revenue account, which was never remitted and further argued that even if the N501 million was a “constant”as revenue from PPPRA within the period under consideration, then it would have shortchanged government to the tune of over N2 billion.
The lawmakers then summoned the ES to appear before it on February 24th with statements of account, outstanding indebtedness, annual budgets from 2011 till date and copies of all reconciliation with NNPC, as well as all the contracts awarded and names of contracts and details, but he failed to do so.
He also failed to appear before the House panel on Tuesday.


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