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N2bn Unremitted Fund: Reps Investigate Abuja Investment Coy

By AMARACHUKWU OKOROAFOR

The House of Representatives has mandated its Committee on Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to investigate the Abuja Investment Company Limited (AICL) over its alleged non-remittance of N2 billion proceeds to the FCT administration.

This is sequel to a motion by Hon. Shehu Aliyu Musa in which he alleged that over N2 billion proceeds from 13 subsidiaries of AICL were diverted by the dissolved management of the company.

The subsidiaries are Abuja Property Development Company Ltd (APDC) with 100 per cent shareholding; Abuja Urban Mass Transport Company Limited (AUMTCO) with 100 per cent shareholding; Abuja Market Marketing Limited (AMML) with 95 per cent shareholding; Abuja Technology Village Free Zone (ATVFZ) with 51 per cent shareholding; and Abuja Film Village Ltd with 50 per cent; and Gas Farm Project with 50 per cent shareholding.

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Others include; Abuja Leasing Company (ALC) with 20 per cent shareholding; Power North AICL Equipment Leasing Company with 20 per cent; American Hospital with 20 per cent and Aso Savings and Loans Plc
with 10 per cent shareholding.

The rest are Abuja Power Company Ltd with 10 per cent shareholding; Capital Hotels (Sheraton Hotels and Towers, Abuja) with 6.51 shareholdings; and Abuja Downtown Mall with five per cent shareholding.

Leading debate on the motion, Hon. Musa expressed concern that despite the rapid growth of investments, the AICL, which is wholly owned by the FCTA is not remitting the required revenue to the FCT treasury; adding that the company has over $100 million currently under its management.

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Also yesterday, the House directed its committee on petroleum resources (upstream) to investigate allegations of infractions in the operations and activities of the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) and report back within six weeks.

This decision was consequent on a motion sponsored by Hon. Ahmed Abu on alleged  persistent lack of capacity and attendant revenue loss to the nation due to some infractions.

Leading debate on the motion, Abu posited that 29 years after its establishment, the NPDC seemingly lacks the capacity to compete favourably in the oil and gas industry and “is reported to be consistently ceding its core activities to third party private entities without strategic alliance agreements”.

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He said these alliances involves the provision of funds by those entities to carry out exploration and production activities on almost all the company’s oil fields, including the lifting of crude on its
behalf.

According to him, most of these third party entities are newly registered companies with little or no technical experience or financial capability to carry out or meet the terms of those strategic alliance agreements “but are owned by cronies of members of the management of NPDC and other interested parties and are consequently
allowed access to funds obtained by NPDC from government appropriation to their benefits.”

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