Reps probing PPP threaten to cancel lease over non-compliance

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Improper management of government assets through Private Partnership and Concessions has been one of the major challenges in infrastructure development.

The House of Representatives Committee investigating the Public Private Partnership and Concessions programme has threatened to cancel all leases and concessions in the Federal Ministry of Transport.

Rep. Ademorin Kuye, Chairman of the House Committee on Public Assets made this known when the delegation from the Federal Ministry of Transport led by the Permanent Secretary, Pius Oteh appeared before the committee in Abuja.

He said that the PPP and concessions agreement of Nigeria Railway Corporation, (NRC) and the Railway Property Management Company Limited (RPMC) might be cancelled over non-compliance with extant laws.

Oteh however told the committee that the ministry has over 170 leases but was unable to provide the relevant documents as required by the lawmakers to prove whether there was compliance with the extant laws.

One of the required documents is the receipt of payment which the lawmakers said was not attached to the documents submitted by the ministry in disregard to their request.

The committee in its resolution invited the Minister of Transport, Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria Railway Corporation and other relevant organisations to appear on their next sitting. The chairman warned that the committee will not hesitate to invoke relevant constitutional provisions if any organisation fails to honour their invitation.

“As you may be aware, this committee will not hesitate to invoke the relevant constitutional provisions if any head of ministry, agency or department fails to honour the invitation of this committee.

“We can issue an arrest warrant and direct the relevant security agencies to bring such person here,” he said.

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He noted that improper management of government assets through Private Partnership and Concessions has been one of the major challenges in infrastructure development.

It would be recalled that the House of Reps through its resolution in February mandated the committee on Public Assets and Special Duties to probe Public-Private Partnership initiatives and concession agreements across the country.

The committee noted that despite initiating several PPPs and concession programmes, the outcomes have been mixed, with some projects stalled and others failing to yield anticipated results.

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