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House faults Act establishing Automotive council

The House of Representatives has demanded for all relevant documents that will enable it review the Act Establishing the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC)

This is with a view of making it more accountable and transparent in it’s financial operations.

Chairman, House Committee on Public Accounts, Mr Wole Oke stated this when the Director-General of the Council, Mr Aliyu Jelani, appeared at an investigative hearing on their financial dealings and the state of its annual audited financial reports.

Mr Oke identified what he termed a ‘serious’ lacuna in the Act Establishing the Agency as it did not specifically spell out it’s modes of operational funding.

According to the Director-General of the Council, Aliyu Jelani, the NADDC operations are funded from the two percent Levies on imported second hand vehicles and a later established thirty-five percent pool levies on imported new vehicles into the country.

He explained that while capital and other recurrent expenditure of the Council are funded through the two levies, salaries are paid through Government Treasury.

Mr Jelani explained that the levies are warehoused in the CBN pending the approval of the Council’s annual budget.

He further explained that the Agency does not have direct access to the levies meant to fund it’s operations, but had to apply and depend on the Accountant General of the Federation for release of its appropriated funds.

In his ruling, the Committee chairman noted that leaving the expenditure of both levies in its present state of open-endedness leaves room for manipulation.

Mr Oke then instructed the Clerk of Committee to write the appropriate Authorities for the Agency’s approved budgets, the Act Establishing it, modes of operation, especially details of the two levies and their approving authorities.

IBRAHIM SHEHU

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