OrderPaperToday – A civil society group, Dynamic Patriotic Citizens Foundation, has expressed concerned and dismay over the continuous stay of Mr. Oluwole Oke as the chairman of the House of Representatives joint committees on Procurement and Pension probing the former Director General of the National Pension Commission (PENCOM), Mrs. Chinelu Anohu-Amazu.
The group wants Mr. Oke to resign from the probe based on alleged corruption and severe conflict of interest. The probe is in respect of alleged violations of the Public Procurement Act and financial mismanagement during Mrs. Anohu-Amazu’s tenure.
They group also suggested that Mr. Oke is using his position to protect Mrs. Dahir-Umar, the incumbent boss of PenCom as alleged by Mr. Johnson Agbonayinma (APC, Edo), the former chairman of the ahoc committee investigating activities of the commission.
Leader of the group, Mr. Tolu Babaleye, made position known in an interview with OrderPaperNG whilst participating in the public hearing organized by the joint committee. He expressed reservation over the committee’s refusal to grant him audience to air his views.
According to Mr. Babaleye, “we are here to show our interest in the probe that is ongoing. You know they are touch-lighting the activities of PENCOM. As you are aware they invited so many people and that’s why we came here and submitted our memo against the chairman of the committee because he has been accused of having an interest in PENCOM. When we heard it, we raised concerns over his credibility to continue to sit as chairman of PENCOM. We are here to urge him to disqualify himself as a member of the committee.
“Well, they looked at my letter and said they could not entertain my presentation. They said I should direct my letter to the adhoc committee on PENCOM chaired by Agbonayinma. Though they have their procedure and this is not a court of law that you know all the procedures and more over I’m not one of them to know the orders. However, they ruled me out of order and I shouted blue murder but I said injustice has been done to me.
“We have been following reports regarding the weighty allegations by an insider whistle blower in PENCOM that exposed corruption and abuse of public office by Mrs. Aisha Dahir-Umar, the Acting Director General (ADG) of PENCOM who has been operating for two years running without Board. And also the issue of missing N33 billion pension funds, and 300% increase of exit/severance allowance and payment to herself while in office and collection of millions of naira estacodes and allowances for local and international trips with out her embarking on them, and amongst others.
Earlier when Mr. Babaleye made attempt to make his presentation before the investigative panel he was met with stiff resistance by members of the committee who advised him to follow the appropriate channel. He was then urged to write or direct such demands to the Speaker of the House of Representatives.