By Ayo Kehinde
On the backdrop of the widely reported alleged failure of the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, to make remittances of surplus funds to the Consolidated Revenue Funds, Ms Hadiza Bala Usman had forwarded a letter of denial, stating that the required surpluses was made for the years, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020.
Reports alleged that following an the Audit’s team review of NPA’s policy on implementation of Corporate Social Responsibility Projects/ Programmes, the authority’s records relating to CSR fell short of the level of compliance with the Public procurement Act 2007, leading to the missing of billions of Naira.
In a letter addressed to the Prof Ibrahim Gambari, Chief of Staff (CoS)to President Muhammadu Buhari, tilted, Re: Request for the Record of Remittance of Operating Surplus to the Consolidated Revenue Funds Account S By the Nigeria Ports Authority, dated May 5, Usman, said the reported story on the basis of which she was asked to step aside as the Managing Director of the authority, is wrong.
In the 4-page letter she stated that the authority remitted all the surpluses for the four years under question.
She stated that in making the remittances, the NPA was guided by the Fiscal ResponsibilIty Act, 2007 as amended, particularly Part 1, Section 3 (1) (b) and (d), “whereby the Fiscal Responsibility Commission, FRC, issued a template for the computation for operating surplus for the purpose of calculating the amount due for remittance to the Consolidated Revenue Funds.
“Accordingly, the figures so provided by the Budgeting Office of the Federation as the operation surplus for the operating years on which basis they arrived at the shortfall are derived from the submission of the budgetary provisions not the actual amounts derived following the statutory audit of the authority’s financial statement.”
On the basis of that, the audited financial statements of the authority stood at N76.782 billion for the year 2017 billion and N71.480 billion for the year 2018 as against the N133.084 billion for 2017 and N88.79 billion for 2018 arrived at by the office of CoS and budgetary submission. Following the operating guidelines of the FRC, the surpluses of the NPA for the years under reference should be N51.9 billion and N42.51, respectively. Accordingly, the NPA remitted surpluses of N40.873billion and N33.969 billion for 2017 and 2018, representing 80 per cent.
For the years 2019 and 2020, following the same model, the NPA remitted surpluses of N31.83 billion in 2019 and N51.049billion in 2020.
She said that based on the template used and applied, the NPA had complied with the request to remit surpluses and added that the Accountant General of the Federation was in possession of the relevant documents similar to the ones the she attached to the letter addressed to the CoS, Professor Ibrahim Gambari.