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Senate threatens PPPRA, NSTIF, others with arrest for evading probe

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The Senate, yesterday, threatened to issue a warrant of arrest against officials of Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) and 54 other government agencies for their failing to appear for investigative hearing.

Chairman, Senate Public Accounts Committee, Matthew Urhoghide, who issued the warrant against the erring agencies, directed the committee to write the indicted agencies to appear next Tuesday or the Senate would invoke appropriate section of constitution against them.

Urhoghide, who raised NSTIF’s issue, said the agency has over 50 queries awaiting response, adding that it was obvious that it was evading investigation.

“We have directed the secretariat of the committee to write the erring government ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) for the last time, asking them to appear on the floor of the Senate as from next week.

“We will invoke Section 89 of the 1999 Constitution, which provides for a bench warrant of arrest to compel deviating agencies to appear,” he said.

He wondered why NSITF would announce that they have a new management, even when they know that government is a continuum, asking:

“For how long do they want the management to be in place before they appear?

“Today, the PPPRA, Rural Electrification Agency (REA) and NSITF are all supposed to be here, bringing the total number of errant agencies to 56. We give them till next Tuesday to appear or we will issue a warrant of arrest on them to appear.

“They came for appropriation and they don’t want to account for the money they collect.”

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