Senate Commends EFCC, Promises To Amend Laws For Better Operations
Chairman, Senate Committee on Anti-Corruption, Sen. Chukwuka Utazi has commended the efforts of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in the fight against corruption as he charged the Ibrahim Magu led management of the anti-graft agency to redouble its effort to save Nigeria from corruption cankerworm.
Senator Utazi made the commendation today, 27th November 2018, during the Committee’s oversight function to the Commission at its new headquarters, Jabi Abuja.
According to Senator Utazi who listened to the EFCC Acting Chairman as he rolled out the performance of the agency in the last 11 months, said we will amend the EFCC Act to ensure that certain percentage of your recoveries will be retained to improve on the quality of the Commission’s assignments. It is not a good thing for the EFCC to be going cap in hand begging for money to do their job. This practise is disadvantaged to your operations. When we succeed in amending the Act, we will take a step further to amend the Constitution to ensure that the Commission is on First Line Charge”, the Senator promised.
The senator lamented a situation where, seven months after moving into the Jabi Headquarters building, the offices are still not furnished. “To hear from you that only 10 percent of the budgetary allocation for the furnishing of the new office has been released is to say the least, unacceptable. It is only when people operate in the right environment that they can do their job perfectly. We are not only going to make your men comfortable in the Abuja office, we shall do our best to extend this gesture to all the offices across the country”, he further assured.
He however lamented the unnecessary delay in the disposal of assets finally forfeited to the federal government. “The revenue that would be derivable from the disposals of such assets would go along way in inflating the economy”. He told the Magu led management to intensify efforts in the disposal of the assets and where there is any hitch, the Committee should be contacted immediately.
Earlier in his opening remark, the EFCC Acting Chairman gave the detail of monetary final forfeiture for the last 11 months to include: N12, 747, 521, 465. 01 (Twelve Billion, Seven Hundred and Forty Seven Million, Five Hundred and Twenty One Thousand , Four Hundred and Sixty Five Naira and One Kobo) ; $175, 077.81 (One Hundred and Seventy Five Thousand Dollars and Eighty One Cent) and 597, 353.65 Pounds (Five Hundred and Ninety Seven Thousand, Three Hundred and Fifty Three Pounds and Sixty Five Pence).
The Chairman who said the Commission recorded unprecedented over 240 convictions between January till date, also gave record of summary of final forfeited assets to include: 116 automobiles, 5 Bank Accounts, 15 land, 21 Real Estate and thee Equipment/Machinery. Assets forfeited under interim are: 25 automobiles, 39 bank Accounts, Four filling Stations, 47 Real Estates, Two Vessels, uncalibrated quantities of petroleum product, One Tugboat, One Hotel, One barge and Four Shops.
Magu, however, lamented that of the N12. 717 billion appropriated for the Commission’s personnel cost for the fiscal year, only N6.739 billion, representing 53.06 percent has been released. Similarly, he said that the sum of N3.6 billion was appropriated for Over Head. Of this amount only N1. 650 billion representing 45.83 percent has been released. In the area of Capital budget, he also lamented that of the N10.074 billion appropriated for capital expenditure in 2018 financial year, only N1. 007 billion, representing 10 percent of total appropriation has been released.
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