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Reps summon finance minister over subsidy, query NNPC

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The House of Representatives’ Ad Hoc Committee to Investigate the Petroleum Products Subsidy regime from 2013 to 2022 has summoned the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, to appear before it on Tuesday next week for questioning.

Ahmed is to appear before the committee with all the documents demanded by the lawmakers relating to subsidy claims and payments in the period under review.

Chairman of the committee, Ibrahim Aliyu, issued the summons at the continued investigative hearing of the panel in Abuja on Tuesday.

Members of the committee had faulted the appearance of the ministry’s Director of Home Finance, Stephen Okon, without a letter from Ahmed authorising him to represent her.

Aliyu decried the non-appearance of several invited agencies, calling out the Nigeria Police Force, Department of State Services, Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, Shell Petroleum Development Company, among others.

After Okon was eventually allowed to speak, the director said he only appeared before the lawmakers to seek more time for the ministry to collate and present the required documents.

The committee consequently gave the committee one week to do so.

The chairman said, “This committee requested from you to know the total amount released from the Consolidated Revenue Account as subsidy payments from January 2013 to date; the total amount released from other accounts other than the Consolidated Revenue Account to subsidy payments from January 2013 to date; breakdown of beneficiaries; companies that enjoyed releases from the Consolidated Revenue Account and other revenue accounts as subsidy payments.

“Identify each beneficiary with the amount sent to them, month by month, covering the period from January 2013 to date; all correspondences between the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Nigeria regarding subsidy payments from January 2013 to date; evidence of lodgement of forex into Consolidated Revenue Account by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation now (Nigerian National Petroleum Company) Limited as revenue from January 2013 to date.

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