Nigerian officials call for Central Bank probe

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The Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has been ordered to allow investigations of fraud and mismanagement of funds by the economic and financial crime committee (EFCC).

The request was made by the the House of Representatives Committee on Power. The committee wants the EFCC to investigate how due process was set aside in paying contractors; spending part of internally-generated revenue amounting to N786 million without due process, and the role of the Central Bank of Nigeria in view of the apparent unwillingness of the CBN to co-operate with the Committee in this matter or provide the Committee with a proper account of withdrawals from the Excess Crude Account amongst other issues recommended for probe.

According to reports, the committee noted further that it is perturbed by the failure of the CBN Governor to provide information in respect of Letters of Credit opened and where the money involving over $1 billion has been kept all these years, and recommend that the EFCC be invited to investigate the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and the Central Bank of Nigeria in respect of the above issues relating to Letters of Credit opened.

Also to be investigated are individuals and firms with contracts recommended for review, investigation and further action for reasons of non-completion of contracts long after contract date of completion- in spite of having been paid, non-performance, lack of execution capacity, demonstrated incompetence or abandonment of contract.

In addition, the committee recommended an intensive and extensive purge at all levels of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) and associated agencies, saying corrupt staff must not be allowed to infest and poison the emergent platform for implementation of the power sector reforms.

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