General

House of Reps probes alleged N180.9m insurance breach

The House of Representatives Committee on Insurance and Actuarial has commenced an investigation into the N180.9 million insurance premium allegedly paid for the failed Satellite 1 project which was launched in 2011 as well as Satellite 1-R for which Nigeria obtained $500 million Chinese loan.

The Committee has given 7 days ultimatum for submission insisting that NigComsat must submit all documents on insurance transactions

Chairman of the Committee, Mr Darlington Nwokocha who presided over the hearing, also quizzed two Managing Directors of Fasahal Insurance and A & G engaged by NigComSat management over alleged irregularities surrounding the unilateral appointment of the insurance brokers without recorded to due process.

Mr Nwokocha explained that the committee’s investigation was premised on about 6 petitions written by concerned Nigerians within the insurance industry and those working within some of the organization invited.

He added that the investigative hearing was aimed at unravelling issued bothering on infractions, impunity perpetrated by the operator who allegedly influenced the contract as well as financial recklessness entrenched in the multi-million dollar satellite contract.

Other lawmakers who spoke during the exercise, frowned at the blatant breach of extant regulatory laws, demanded for relevant documents on various transactions carried out.

While responding to questions on the appointment of the Lead insurance company, NigComSat Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Abimbola Alale argued that the Chinese company which manufactured the satellite unilaterally nominated the UK based insurance firm to insure NigComsat 2 which was launched in 2014.

On her part, NigComSat Legal Adviser, Mrs Alina Okpalefe who affirmed that she was the Secretary of the Project Committee disclosed that no legal official accompanied the delegation to China where the contract was sealed in the year 2011.

The Committee then demanded for bank statements on all the transactions, schedule insurance policy, stressing that there is no classified information that should be hidden from the Parliament.

Source: Voice of Nigeria