The Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority has responded to the allegations of misappropriation of funds made against her by the office of the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi. The allegations precede an approval by President Muhammadu Buhari asking the Hadiza to step aside for proper investigations of the allegations and audit of the accounts of the agency.
In her response to the Chief of Staff to the President, Hadiza Bala-Usman argued that the basis for arriving at the operating surplus of the NPA, upon which the budget office calculated the amount due as remittances to the federation account, was flawed and not in tune with the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
She said the figures provided by the budget office as the operating surplus for 2017 and 2018 were higher than the actual figures derived from the NPA’s audited financial statements.
The statement which was released earlier today reads:
The attention of the Authority has been drawn to a letter conveying Mr. President’s approval for the Federal Ministry of Transportation (FMOT) to conduct an audit of the accounts of the Authority and its remittances to the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CFR). This arose from a correspondence between the Budget Office of the Federation (BOF) and the Federal Ministry of Transportation where the Budget Office of the Federation conveyed to the FMOT and observed a shortfall of the Authorities remittances to the CFR. (copy attached for ease of reference)
We wish to state that the Authority’s basis for arriving at the Operating Surplus on which basis the amount due for remittance to the CFRis guided by the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007 as amended and further based on the statutory mandate Part 1, S.3(1) (b) &(d) whereby the Fiscal Responsibility Commission issued a template for the computation of Operating Surplus for the purpose of the calculating amount due for remittance to the CRF (attached herewith as annex 2 is the template as conveyed to the Authority)
Accordingly, the figures so provided by the Budget Office of the Federation as the Operating Surplus for the respective years on which basis they arrived at the shortfall are derived from submission of budgetary provision, not the actual amounts derived following the statutory audit of the Authorities financial statements.
2017 and 2018 Remittances
Audited Financial Statements of the Authority for the period 2017 and 2018 (copies herewith attached) provides operating surpluses of N76.782 billion and N71.480 billion for 2017 and 2018 respectively as contrary to the sums of N133.084 billion and N88.79 billion arrived at by your office from the budgetary submission.
In line with the template issued by the Fiscal Responsibility Commission, the accessible Operating Surplus of the Authority stands at N51.09 billion and N42.51 billion for 2017 and 2018 respectively. This amounts will give rise to a remittance due to the CFR in the sum of N40.873billion and N34.065 billion representing 80% of the surpluses for the year 2017 and 2018 respectively. (Attached herewith as annex 3 is the schedule of the computed template for the respective years). Accordingly, the Authority consequently made a remittance of N42.415 billion and N33.969 billion for the years 2017 and 2018 respectively for the full amount required as remittance for the period (attached herewith are the treasury receipts).
The Audit of the 2019 Financial Statement has been completed and awaiting consideration of the Authorities Board at which point the final figures for the 2019 operating surplus will be determined for consequent computation of the amount due for remittance to the CFR. But thus far the Authority has made a remittance of N31.683 billion for the 2019 remittance while the sum of N51.049 billion has also thus far been remitted for 2020 while awaiting the audited of the financial statement to determine the final amount required for both 2019 and 2020 at which point the Authority will make the payment of the balance as required. (Attached is are the treasury receipt for the respective payments).
Based on the above, we wish to clarify the following:
1. The Authority’s computation of its remittances to the CFR are concluded arising from numbers from Audited Financial Statements using the template forwarded to the Authority from the Fiscal Responsibility Commission as herewith attached and not budgetary provision
2. That the Authority has remitted the full amount due it to CFR for the periods 2017 and 2018 arising from the Operating Surplus derived from the Audited Financial Statement for the period totaling N 76.384 billion as evidenced in the attached treasury receipts.
3. That the Authority has remitted a total of N 82.687 billion for the period 2019 and 2020 pending the audit of the financial statement at which point the amount so computed arising from the value of the Operating Surplus in the audited financial statement will be remitted to the CFR.
We wish to request that the Chief of Staff requests the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation who are the statutory custodian of the status of payment to the CRF to provide clarification on the above so as to establish the true position of the Authorities remittances to the CFR.