NEMA Reacts To Rep’s Recommendation That Its Boss Should Be Sacked
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) yesterday rejected the report of the House of Representatives committee which faulted it for poor management of relief items meant for 16 states.
Naija News recall that the House of Representatives, at its sitting of 8th November 2018 , recommended the sack of NEMA Boss, Mr Mustapha Maihaja, after it established mismanagement or outright embezzlement of funds occasioned by his actions or inactions.
In a statement last night, NEMA said: “The House of Representatives, at its sitting of 8th November 2018 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.
“The processes of securing duty exemption, waivers and other related issues took several months, but the total quantity was subsequently cleared from the Apapa Port, transported and delivered to NEMA warehouses in the North East. It was thereafter distributed to the IDPs in the States of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe. Documents on the transaction, including distribution to the IDPs were made available to the Committee.
“The correct total value of the rice is about N2.25 Billion (50 Million Chinese Yuan) and the amount spent on clearing, demurrage and storage was about N450 Million, not the N800 Million as alleged by the Committee.
“On EFCC Investigation of the suspended staff (employees) of NEMA, the suspension of the Six (6) NEMA officers was a decision of its Governing Council based on the Interim Report of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, which indicted them for financial misappropriation.
“The suspension was in line with Public Service Rules and the extant Guidelines on Appointment, Promotion and Discipline.
“On the approval of N1.6 billion granted by the Federal Government for the Procurement and Delivery of Relief Items to 16 States affected by Flood in 2017, due process was observed in the procurement of the relief items and all items meant for the 16 states were received and acknowledged by respective State Governments. Documents evidencing the acknowledgement of the items were made available to the House Committee.
“The evacuation of stranded Nigerians from Libya was a multi-agency operation. Two Thousand, One Hundred and Thirty (2,130) Nigerians were evacuated in the operation.
The green chamber had after its investigation, recommended the following:
“Based on the investigation conducted by the Committee, it has been established that the Federal Government of Nigeria lost a total sum of over N33 billion as a result of mismanagement of funds occasioned by the actions or inactions of the Managing Director of NEMA.
”It is consequently recommended that the Director General be relieved of his duties by the President, Commander in Chief, Federal Republic of Nigeria and be handed over to relevant authorities for prosecution.The House also resolved to launch a comprehensive investigation into the receipt and utilization of 20 per cent Ecological Fund to NEMA over the years. The report said.
While considering the Hon. Ali Isa-headed committee’s report on “Need to Investigate the Violation of Public Trust in the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA),” also adopted the recommendations that:
“On the issue of donation of 6,779 metric tons of rice by Chinese Government for IDP’s in the North East, the House said the EFCC and ICPC should further investigate NEMA and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Budget and National Planning as it was never received by the beneficiaries.
“that the ICPC, EFCC and Police should ensure recovery of the payment of about N800m demurrage from the concerned officers of the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, Ministry of Agriculture and NEMA.
“that the suspension of six staff of NEMA by its management is an abuse of power, against the extant public service rules and a gross violation of Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
“That the affected staff (employees) be immediately re-instated by NEMA and the appropriate authorities and all their arrears of entitlements paid: Mr. Akinbola Hakeem -Director, Finance and Accounts, Alhassan Nuhu – Director Disaster & Risk Reduction, Mr. Emenike Umesi – Ag. Director, Special Duties, Mohammed Kanar -Deputy Director Welfare, Mr. Mamman Ibrahim – DD Captain of the Air Ambulance and Yunusa Deji Ganiyu – Asst. Chief Administrative Officer.”
“That the ICPC and EFCC should further investigate the matter and recover the sum of N700m from Maihaja, who is the Accounting Officer of the Agency.”
“That all the government officials involved in the approval, processing, release and diversion of the sum of N5.8billion for the emergency intervention of food security in the North East, which contravened the provisions of S.80(2) and 80(4) of the Constitution, infraction of due process for procurement and loss of government revenue, flouting of the terms of the Eurobond loan are hereby indicted and the relevant Security Agencies should take steps to recover the money from them;
“That the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) being a banker to the Federal Government should not be involved in giving loans to private companies. Consequently, the N2billion said to be given to four named companies is a fundamental infraction and should be further investigated.”
On the issue of release of N3, 153,000,000.00 to NEMA for food intervention to the North-East, the House recommended that “ICPC and EFCC should recover N1,150,000,000.00 being subsidised cost of 5000 metric tons of rice from the present Director General of NEMA, Eng. Mustapha Yunusa Maihaja, who claimed to have donated same to World Food Programme (WFP) when they were ready to pay for it or import same;
On the question of unaccounted N17, 889,050,401 released from Ecological Fund to NEMA, the House recommended:
“That NEMA should submit through the appropriate authority all the Ecological funds accruing to it yearly to the National Assembly for Appropriation in order to meet the Constitutional requirements.
“That a comprehensive investigation into the receipt and utilization of 20% Ecological Fund to NEMA over the years be carried out by the House.”
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