Minute by Minute: Reps reveal how NEMA DG, Maihaja, misappropriated N1.6bn

The House of Representatives committee on Emergency and Disaster Preparedness has uncovered irregularities in award of contracts by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

At an investigative hearing on violation of public trust in NEMA by the House Committee, it was discovered that the agency spent N1.6billon on contract awards to companies that have no tax clearance and other prerequisite qualifications as demanded by the Nigerian laws.

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The amount was released to the agency by the Federal Government in July 2017 for relief intervention to flood victims in 16 states.

The huge sum was said to have been expended on contracts awarded to 216 companies.

At the investigative hearing which was presided over by the Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Ali Isa, the committee revealed that the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), the National Pension Commission (PENCOM) and the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) in their reports revealed that NEMA violated the law on tax and committed other breaches in the award of contracts to the companies.

In their separate reports, FIRS, ITF and PENCOM stated that the Director General, Mustapha Maihaja, did not carry out due diligence and financial regulations on the companies to know their qualifications and their status before awarding them multi-million Naira contracts.

Aside the tax laws, the management was also indicted for breaching the Public Procurement Act 2007 in the ways and manners it awarded the controversial contracts.

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