The opposition Action Democratic Party (ADP) has called for a full-scale investigation into alleged theft of over 165 billion Naira from the coffers of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) between 2016 and 2020.
The party also kicked against the appointment of the Acting Managing Director, Muhammed Koko to oversee the affairs of the NPA on the basis that he had already been compromised.
ADP’s national chairman, Engr Yabagi Sani, in a statement released Sunday in Abuja, said Koko’s appointment was in clear contravention of standard administrative procedures by which, the most senior officer in charge of Administration or Operations and not Finance, is the one to be appointed in acting position in the event of a vacancy in the office of the Chief Executive.
The party justified it’s position based on Koko’s alleged intimate relationship with the Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi way back to his days as Speaker and Governor in Rivers state which is said to have culminated in the appointment of the former Banker as Executive Director of Finance and Accounts at the NPA on the emergence as in 2015.
It noted: “Our party vehemently objects to the “Administrative panel” presently entrusted with the task because, in our view, that will tantamount to asking Rotimi Amaechi to sit in judgement over his own case.
“Secondly, in order to make for a credible probe, the ADP is of the strong view that on the grounds of his moral baggage and administrative anomalies in his appointment, the NPA Acting Managing Director, Muhammed Koko is too clearly compromised and stained and must therefore be replaced to enhance equity and transparency in the dispensation of justice.
“The ADP is advocating that while the scope of investigation of the allegation of the 165 Billion should be widened to cover the entire finances of the NPA from 2015 to date, a similar exercise should be conducted into the books of the other “lucrative” agencies and departments where humongous sums of funds have been obviously diverted or siphoned into private coffers.
” The ADP believes that will be a more effective panacea to the pulsating economy than the resort to reducing the salaries of the nation’s workforce as being suggested by some insensitive and coldblooded government functionaries.
“As it is, the above observations and recommendations cannot see the light of day, for as long as the man at the helm of affairs of the country decides to be mute and aloof even when national exigencies demand otherwise. In spite of this known tendency, the Action Democratic Party is hereby once again stridently calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to come out of the cozy cocoon of the Villa and demonstrate leadership.
” This is one yet such momentous reasons for the President to prove he has not abdicated his solemnly sworn covenant with the electorate. It is another auspicious time for our leader let the citizens appreciate that he is indeed there, awake and in charge as the pilot of the ship of our nation.
“If he must be told the truth, it is time President Buhari realized that those to who he has entrusted or bequeathed the burden of leadership have simply been running their own show by feathering their own nests. It is amazing that a President who wishes to leave a legacy of a crusader against corruption should appear so complacent and comfortable with a swarm of brazen, unabashed kleptomaniacs.”
The ADP claimed it was privy to the use of the NPA as a major source of illegal funds used in the APC campaign and rigging of the 2019 general elections and is also abreast with the plot being hatched by certain APC gladiators to again use her and the agency as their source of funds in the 2023 elections.