Reps accuse Customs of financial irregularities

hameed ali
Hameed Ali, Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Service.

 

The House of Representatives Committee on Unspent Funds by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) has queried the Nigeria Customs Services (NCS) for bloated figures in its capital components, which is not in line with the Appropriation Act.

The committee, which is investigating zonal intervention and unspent funds by the MDAs, issued the query on Tuesday in Abuja.

The Chairman of the committee, Francis Uduyo (PDP-Akwa Ibom), expressed worry at the irregularities in the financial statements of the NCS.

He said that the agency has breached the Public Procurement Act by recycling for three companies for 10 years to carry out its contracts.

The lawmaker frowned at 191 contracts worth over one billion naira awarded in one day by Customs without due process.

“This is not acceptable and parliament will not condone any breach of Acts of parliament no matter the reason. These expenditures do not reflect what is approved in the budget and it is in clear breach of the Public Procurement Act,” Uduyo said.

The Comptroller General of the service, Hammeed Ali, apologised to the lawmakers for errors and discrepancies in the financial statement presented by the service.

He pleaded for more time to correct the discrepancies, pledging that the corrected copy will be submitted immediately. The committee then adjourned hearing.