Reps to Agencies: Suspend all concession processes pending probe

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By Disun Amosun

In line with the House of Representatives commitment to appraising the efficacy of the Public Private Partnership PPP programme, its Joint Committee on Public Assets and Special Duties has asked all Federal government agencies to halt every existing or intended such processes until its ongoing investigation is concluded.

The Joint House Committee which gave this directives at its inaugural investigative hearing at the National Assembly Complex in Abuja, berated the agencies that appeared for the hearing for their sketchy submissions on the matter, warning that it needed full details on all such consessionering agreement to get to the root of the matter.

The Agencies that appeared before the committee at its inaugural investigation session included the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) and the Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), all did not tender the full documents requested by the panel.

This is just as the Speaker of the House Rt Hon Abbas Tajudeen said while declaring the investigative hearing open, noted that it represented a crucial milestone in inputting legislative balance in appraising the PPP and Concession Agreements from 1999 till date.

Represented by the Deputy Speaker, Rt Hon Benjamin Kalu, Abbas described the objective of the Investigation as explicit – to meticulously dissect the triumph, challengers and overall impact of the PPPs and Concession agreements on Public Infrastructure and Services.

“As we set off on this journey of investigation and evaluation, we should remain mindful of the public interest we are duty-bound to serve. Your insights and expertise are vital in shaping recommendations that will steer the course of future policies and practices. Hence, I encourage active involvement, constructive discourse, and a mutual t to transparency and accountability.

“Together, let us ensure that the outcomes of this hearing not only provide a comprehensive understanding of past performances but also lay a solid foundation for more effective and equitable Public Private Partnerships in the future,” the Speaker added.

Chairman of the Joint Investigative Committee Rep Kabir Ibrahim who earlier announced the suspension of all concession agreements till after the close of the Investigation, said “Having gone through submissions of the Agencies, they appeared skeletal and lacked what is required for a detailed perusal of the job at hand”.

He then gave the concerned Agencies additional 7 days to come up with detailed responses to inquiries posed by the Committee in its letters of invitation to appear before