….Quiz FRSC, NOTAP Over Alleged Revenue Leakages

By Joshua Afolabi, Abuja

The House of Representatives committee on public accounts has summoned the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Olayemi Cardoso,
Attorney-general of the federation, Lateef Fagbemi, before the Committee over alleged revenue leakages through Remita platform.

Other invitees are; Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Zacch Adedeji (PhD), and Minister of Finance, Wale Edun to appear on Tuesday, February 27th, 2024.

They are also to give an account of the roles played by each of the institutions in the contract agreement with Remita.

The committee issued the summon on Tuesday during its public hearing/ investigation into the alleged revenue leakages through the Remita platform and non-compliance with standard operating procedures and service level agreements in 2023.

According to the Chairman of the Committee, Rep. Bamidele Salam, “We are here in continuation of the investigation into revenue leakages on the Remita platform, as well as non-compliance with statute agreement by major players on the Remita transactions involving collection of revenue on behalf of Federal government of Nigeria. The Federal Road Safety Corps is one of the agencies and organizations founded by the Federal government of Nigeria as a set of Revenue they collect on behalf of the government using the Remita platform”

The committee complained about the inconsistency in the Federal Road Safety Corps document submitted to the Committee.

While presenting the Revenue generated on behalf of the federal government from 2015 to 2022, Mr. Dauda Biu, FRSC Corps Marshal, who appeared with his lieutenants disclosed that the service has two types of revenue.

According to him, “We have two types of revenue, which are independent revenue, those revenues that are directly from the activities we do, traffic offenses, and other revenue that are directly entering to our account while the other one from our partnership with the state government, that is the Number plates, and drivers licence. We partner to produce the licence for the State government and the plate number and then out of that we get some operating surplus which we remit to the federal government.

“2015-2022 summary schedule of Federal Government of Nigeria Independent revenue generated and remitted to Consolidated Revenue Fund Account (CFA A/C) on Fines, Contractors Registration and Sale of Unserviceable items in 2015, N763.6 million, in 2016, N1.9 billion, in 2017, N1.7 billion, in 2018, N1.6 billion, in 2019, N2 billion, in 2020, N1.5 billion, in 2021 N1.9 billion and in 2022 N2.3 billion was realised in the fiscal year, respectively.

“2017-2022 Summary Schedule of Federal government of Nigeria internally generated revenue and remitted to Consolidated Revenue Fund Account (CFA A/C) on Number Plate, National Driver’s licence and signage in 2017, N4.4 billion, in 2018, N5.1 billion, in 2019, N6.5 billion, in 2020, N6.2 billion, in 2021 N7.3 billion and 2022 N billion was realised in the fiscal year, respectively.

While responding to the Chairman’s question on the total amount the service generated between 2015 to 2022, he said, “We didn’t bring them together.”

“You need to bring them together. That is exactly the problem we said with your spreadsheet submission because there is a very major difference between what Remita Submitted and what you claimed. There is a difference about N7 billion with your document” Rep. Salam explained.

National Office for Technology Acquisition And Promotion (NOTAP), Acting Director General, Dr. Idoreyin Imiyoho, and staff also appeared before the Committee on alleged Revenue leakages.

According to her, “NOTAP is a technology office, so we registered a technology transfer agreement and for each agreement that is presented to the office, the company that presents it is expected to pay so we called it a registration fee. There are different types of fees outlined for revenue

“The first one is registration fee, presentation fee, and penalty fee, publication fee, and tender fee. Those are the sources of our revenue generation for the office.

“We have Gross revenue generated by the office. It was supposed to be from 2015 to 2022 but we couldn’t generate the statement because we just realized when we came here, when we asked Remita they said it Archive, so we are able to generate 2019”.

Answering the Committee question on why the office relies on Remita to generate statements when they can easily get them from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), she said, “Formerly when we could do bank reconciliation on remita in 3 years ago even before TSA and when we came on TSA, we were doing reconciliation because we could easily access our statement through remita but like 4 years ago, CBN now said we have to come to them for our statement.

“And the problem is that when you go to CBN to collect your bank statement, the statement will not be detailed, it bulked. Maybe 10 companies pay money today, you will just see a credit with twenty million, five hundred, no company name, no details, if payment is made the same thing, since then we have not been doing any reconciliation” she explained.

The Committee unanimously ordered FRSC and NOTAP to resubmit documents that follow the template of the parliament requirement from 2015 to 2022.