For the second time in a row, the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Adewale Adeniyi and the Managing Director of Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko, have snubbed the House of Representatives ad hoc committee investigating the disposal of public property by the agencies between 2010 and 2012.
The committee had last week summoned both Bell-Koko and Adeniyi to appear before it, an invitation they refused to honour.
However, the Majority Leader of the House and Chairman of the ad hoc committee, Hon. Julius Ihonbvere, on Tuesday at the resumed investigative hearing on the disposal of public property by the agencies between 2010 and 2022 to unravel the extent of illegal auctioning of public property, non-remittance of revenue realised into the Consolidated Revenue Fund’, said this political rascality and irresponsibility must stop.
The chairman, who could not hide his anger, said the ad hoc committee would stop the lackadaisical behaviour of the duo.
He said, “This kind of political rascality and irresponsibility must stop! No chief executive is above the law, we are the lawmakers and when we summon an agency here, that agency must show up.
“We have the powers to summon anyone in this country by powers that are guaranteed constitutionally and we think this kind of lackadaisical and almost infantile behaviour at this stage, we have to check it and stop it.
“Twice, we have summoned them, but they refused to show up here. We know what our powers are and after this hearing, we will be taking the next steps in that direction.”
Ihonbvere noted that the goal of the 10th House is to work seamlessly with agencies of government, irrespective of what their functions might be.
He added: “But since some agencies, particularly the Customs and the NPA, have proven recalcitrant, it is now left for this Committee and the House of Representatives to demonstrate to them the powers granted us by the constitution, and we will be taking that next step.
“We are not going to appeal to them again, we are not going to call them, we are not going to write to them; they will hear from the appropriate sections of the House of Representatives.”