The House of Representatives on Tuesday in Abuja, commenced a four-day investigative public hearing on the alleged under-remittance of revenue into the federation account by some agencies.
The hearing is being organised by the house ad hoc committee on under remittance of revenue, chaired by Rep. James Faleke (APC-Kogi)
Declaring the event open, the Speaker, Mr Yakubu Dogara said the committee was formed following a resolution of the house to investigate the alleged under remittance.
He said the committee’s report would guide the house to make further resolutions with the view to averting further under remittance of revenue into federation account.
According to him, at this period when government is making efforts towards diversification of the economy, it is disheartening to hear repeated cases of under remittance of revenue by agencies required to generate and manage the revenue.
Dogara recalled that Federation Account Allocation Committee meeting was called off three times in March as a result of controversies regarding non remittance of funds by some agencies.
The Speaker said that the situation led to delays in payment of salaries of government workers across the country among others.
He said that with the dwindling funds from the oil sector, it was important to close up all leakages in revenue.
Dogara urged participants at the hearing to demonstrate patriotism by being opened and candid in their submissions for posterity.
The Speaker also urged the committee to demonstrate commitment to the assignment so that the house would achieve the purpose for which it was setup.
Earlier speaking, Faleke thanked stakeholders for honoring invitation for the event.
He commended the house for finding the committee worthy of the responsibility of carrying out the investigation.
Faleke said that the committee was mindful of the huge task ahead and pledged to be committed to the course.
According to the lawmaker, the current state of affairs in Nigeria shows a crunch and cash-strapped economy that seems to be crawling at a slow pace out of recession.
“This has occasioned a bizarre situation where state governments can barely pay salaries, while borrowing takes a large chunk of government spending.
“Overall budgetary expenditure being adversely affected by dwindling revenue, yet the current system has continuously encouraged unpatriotic Nigerians to device ways of diverting our revenue for personal use,” he said.
The legislator said that, as representatives of the people, it was the responsibility of the house to put in place mechanism that would forestall further corruption in the system.
Faleke said that the mandate of the committee was clear.
“We will discharge our duty without fear or favour,” he said.
The chairman expressed hope that the outcome of the public hearing would reposition revenue generating system at all levels.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that some of the agencies represented at the hearing are Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Customs Service, Nigerian Inland Waterways Authority and Nigerian Communications Commission.