In light of allegations of financial misdeeds by the suspended Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala-Usman, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, established an investigation panel to look into the agency’s books.
The 11-member committee is chaired by Auwalu Suleiman, Director of Maritime Services, and co-chaired by Mr Ben Omogo, Director, Organization Design & Development (OHCSF).
While launching the panel of inquiry, Amaechi charged its members with conducting an honest and comprehensive investigation.
The committee’s terms and references include the following: “Examine and investigate the administrative policies and strategies implemented by the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority and confirm compliance with existing laws and rules from 2016 — date.”
“Examine and investigate issues that led to the termination of Nigerian Ports Authority pilotage and other contracts, and confirm compliance with the terms of the respective contracts, court decisions, and Presidential directives.”
“Examine and investigate compliance with the Public Service contact channel.
“Examine and investigate contract procurement from 2016 to the present. Provide suggestions and recommendations to improve the activities of the Nigerian Ports Authority and prevent similar incidents in the future.
“As well as any other matter that may be needed in the course of the assignment.”
President Muhammadu Buhari suspended Bala-Usman last week following reports of non-remittance of N165 billion in surplus revenue to government coffers.
According to a statement issued by the President’s spokesman, Garba Shehu, President Buhari approved the Ministry of Transportation’s recommendation to establish an Administrative Panel of Inquiry to investigate the management of NPA.
“The President has also authorised Hadiza Bala Usman, the Managing Director, to step aside while the investigation is conducted. Mr Mohammed Koko will fill the vacancy. The panel will be chaired by the Ministry’s Director of Maritime Services, with the Deputy Director of Legal from the same ministry serving as secretary. “The Minister will nominate the other members of the panel,” Shehu said in the statement.