Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Ecological fund: Reps frown at some MDAs, states for failing to appear before investigative committee

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The House of Representatives Committee investigating the total consolidated accruals and utilisation of Ecological Fund has frowned at government agencies and states that failed to appear before it to defend their spending.

Rep. Ibrahim Isiaka, the Chairman of the Committee, in Abuja on Wednesday at the investigative hearing of the committee said he was disturbed by the absence of some of the government agencies and state officials.

”Anyone willing to test the capacity of the committee will not be disappointed.

”The committee has in the last few months worked assadiously to ensure that states were self sustainaned for ecological exigencies. Half of the states affected are not here.

”We will make sure that such people appear through a bench warrant.

”The House of Reps will ensure that laws are enacted so that those institutions who took ecological funds will be made to appear before the committee to defend the spendings,” he said.

He firther said the committee would give them the window to make their submissions or allowed them to defend themselves at another government institutions.

Also speaking, Taiwo Onuga (APC-Ogun), a member of the committee however moved a motion that those agencies that failed to appear before the committee without cogent reading should be made to appear on 9th Nov.

Speaking earlier, Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, said the Ecological Fund of the Federation was established to provide resources for protecting our natural environment.

He said it was also meant for funding repairs and developments necessary to prevent harm, stressing that the dedicated pool of resources in the Ecological Fund is also intended for emergency response.

Mr Gbajabiamila added that it helped in remediation during environmental and natural disasters, stressing that the hearing was convened at a time when millions of Nigerians were suffering the adverse effects of a devastating flood across the country.

Ibrahim Umaru, Commissioner for Finance, Jigawa and Secretary, Association of Finance Commissioners said most commissioners have not gotten clearance from their principals to appear before the committee, hence; the reason they did not show up

Only nine out of 36 states of the Federation invited for the investigative hearing were present and these are Ondo, Kwara, Imo, Ogun, Jigawa, Plateau and Enugu.

Also, some of the agencies that failed to appear include: Ecological project office, Federal Ministry of Niger Delta, National Emergency Management Agency, Federal Ministry of Health among others.


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