The House of Representatives has resolved to revisit the case of the N11.3 trillion allegedly spent by the Federal Government on the turn-around maintenance of Nigeria’s refineries between 2010 and 2020.
Rep. Bamidele Salam, Chairman, House Committee on Public Accounts, said this while speaking with newsmen in Abuja on Thursday.
According to him, the house intends to tackle the rising cost of petroleum products occasioned by the removal of fuel subsidy.
Salam said the house was bothered by the moribund state of Nigeria’s refineries in spite of the huge sum of money expended in trying to put them in shape in the last decade.
He said the era of wasting public funds on white elephant projects without consequences would soon be over.
Salam also said the committee would thoroughly examine the accounts of the federal government and those of the MDAs in order to expose wastage, inefficiency and corruption in the public sector.
He, however, expressed the optimism that President Bola Tinubu’s administration would reposition the Nigerian economy by fixing critical infrastructure like power, roads and rail transportation.
According to him, this can only succeed if there is value for money on all public contracts as well as adherence of government agencies to the provisions of extant laws and regulations on budgeting, procurement and jobs certification.
Salam said many roads, bridges, and other public infrastructure for which humongous sums of money were budgeted and spent in previous years had become dilapidated.
The chairman added that many other projects were abandoned by contractors after receiving full payments.
He said the increased in public revenue occasioned by removal of subsidy and a merger of foreign exchange trading windows, would only make the desired impact, if government blocked wastages and strengthened its audit institutions.
He appealed to Tinubu to urgently appoint a substantive Auditor General for the Federation in accordance with the provisions of Section 86 of the Constitution.
He explained that the non-appointmemt of a substantive auditor – general for close to a year, had impacted negatively on Nigeria’s public finance and accountability ratings by global organisations.