General

Reps threaten to arrest PPPRA head

The Nigerian House of Representatives Committee has threatened to issue a warrant of arrest for the Executive Secretary of Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency, PPRA, Mr. Tony Okonkwo, if he failed for the third time on March 30th, to honour its invitation on allegations that his agency failed to remit generated revenue from 2014 to 2019.

The Chairman, House Committee on Finance, Mr. James Faleke, issued the threat on Tuesday after the Committee dismissed officials from PPPRA who appeared to represent the Executive Secretary of the agency.

The Committee had in early February threatened to effect the removal of the PPPRA’s General Manager of Finance over alleged diversion of over N13billion of funds generated from operations of the agency in 2014.

The General Manager, Finance, Mr. Peter Joshua, who represented the Executive Secretary at that time, told the committee that in the year 2014, his agency generated only N2.8billion, even though, according to the lawmakers, PPPRA made about N13billion from 15k on every litre, deducted from sales of petroleum products.

Mr. Joshua however, insisted that what his agency received from the actual revenue generated, was only N2.8billion, with a balance of over 11billion still with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC and other marketers of petroleum products.

The Committee members all agreed that for Mr. Joshua’s shoddy management of the PPPRA finances due to government, he should be sack.

The committee lamented how PPPRA short-changed the government and people of the country for years.

It discovered during the meeting that in 2014 alone, PPPRA was to pay the sum of N501. 2 million to the consolidated revenue account as revenue, which it declined.

The agency also defaulted in subsequent years, 2015 to date.

“Even if the 501million was a constant as revenue from PPPRA within the period under consideration, then it would have short-changed government to the tune of over N2bn.” Mr. Faleke argued.

The House Committee is investigating the non-remittance of funds to the Federation Account by Federal agencies as part of the lawmakers’ resolve to ensure prudency in line with its Legislative Agenda.

Source: Voice of Nigeria