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Promoting Good Governance.

Again, House suspends hearing on contract allegations against NBET boss

LAWMAKERS in the House of Representatives have again suspended the hearing of the motion seeking to probe Marilyn Amobi, Managing Director of the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc (NBET), accused of several corruption allegations.

The case which ought to be discussed on the floor of the House last Tuesday, 5th May, was shifted to today by the lawmakers for further hearing.

But when Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker of the House called the motion number 12, titled “Gross Misconduct and Insubordination of Mrs Marilyn Amobi, MD of NBET,” the hearing was suspended on an excuse that its sponsor was not present at plenary.

The House had earlier assigned the Committee on Power to probe the corruption allegation against Amobi. The committee members include Hon. Mohammed Ali Wudil, Hon. Muhammed Ibrahim Bukar, Hon. Usman Abdullahi, Hon. Francis E. Waive, Hon. Olarenwaju K. Ibrahim and Hon. Abubakar Makki Yalleman.

These lawmakers also play a statutory oversight function on the Ministry, Departments and Agencies in the power sector.

Investigation on NBET and Amobi has, however, been on-going since 2019 when the House commenced probe against the agency and its head over alleged N90 billion fraud and flouting of the Public Procurement Act.

The ICIR and other members of LeakNG, last year February reported on the allegations against the NBET boss. Some of the suspected fraudulent actions include overpayment to selected power generating companies – Olorunsogo and Omotosho, undue payments to law firms and private consultants.   

On 12th January, the NBET boss was also indicted in another N517 million graft.

A report by Office of the Auditor General of the Federation accused Amobi of contract splitting to Julius Berger, in different amounts, separate award letters within a short timeframe.

Sale Mamman, the new Minister of Power, however, removed Amobi in January following the controversies but she was later reinstated by President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

Lawmakers kick against return of confirmed COVID-19 cases to states of origin

Meanwhile, on the global pandemic, the lawmakers advised the federal government to stop state governors from returning confirmed cases of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID) to their respective states of origin.

The House argued that the move contravenes peoples’ freedom to reside in any part of the country.

For instance, the Kano State government recently returned 524 Almajiri children from the state to Jigawa. Others were sent to Kaduna and Katsina respectively.

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