The ad hoc committee of the House of Representatives investigating the lease of federal government owned assets has invited the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to help in the recovery of N6.5 billion unpaid dues from the Lagos Trade Fair.
The Committee also summoned the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), the Lagos International Trade Complex, Aulic Nigeria Ltd, the Plaza Owners Association and others to appear before in connection with the matter.
The Director of Admin and Human Resources of LITC, Francis Dajilak, informed the committee that Aulic Limited, the concessionaire of the asset, has not remitted money to the federal government coffers since 2008.
He explained that the concession arrangement had been with challenges from the beginning due to disagreement among the parties involved in the complex.
Mr Dajilak explained that the State Security Service (SSS) occupies the part of the land given to the concessionaire which created friction between the agency and Aulic Limited.
He stated that the challenges could have prompted the company not to remit dues to the federal government, which according to him amount to N6.5 billion.
“Between 2008 and 2017 when the contract was terminated, Aulic Nigeria Ltd was owing to a tune of N6.5 billion,” Mr Dajilak told the lawmakers.
He explained that LITC petitioned the EFCC which resulted in the arrest of some officials of Aulic Limited, but that they were subsequently released without paying.
“EFCC made the arrest but later released owners of Aulic after few weeks with no amount paid into government coffers,” he said.
Godson Okoye, counsel to Plaza Owners Association, said the asset has the capacity to generate N12 billion annually if managed properly.
He requested that the committee should give the association a few days to put their position in writing and submit to it.
A member of the committee, Sani Bala (APC, Kano), moved a motion for the EFCC and the others to be summoned and it was adopted unanimously.
The Chairman of the Committee, Dan Asuquo (PDP, Cross River), while ruling on the motion, said it is committed to recovering the money.
He added that the committee is also intrested in protecting the interest of Nigerians who had invested money in the complex.
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