Home Economy Senate queries NITDA for spending £36,200 to feature in UK Magazine, N28m to produce five copies of Procurement Act

Senate queries NITDA for spending £36,200 to feature in UK Magazine, N28m to produce five copies of Procurement Act

by Business News Report

Senate has queried the Management of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) for paying a total sum of £36,000 for a two page interview in United Kingdom magazine  without documentation. The Senate also got furious at NITDA for  spending a total of N28 million to produce five copies of procurement act for the agency. In the response to the query, it was stated by the agency that the said money  was meant for advertorial, but  when the paper was presented before the Committee by the Officials of NITDA, it was a two page interview in the United Kingdom based magazine and there was  no evidence of payment of that amount as was presented before the committee.

It was also discovered that the  payment was only made to the third party company. The committee learnt that for  the printing of NITDA procurement Act, it was recommended that five copies should be printed at the rate of N98,000, but the agency went ahead to print 300 copies which led to the wasting of about N25 million. The Chairman  of the Committee, Senator Urhoghide who was visibly angry because of what he described as reckless spending of government’s  money, subsequently ordered for the repayment of the money back to the coffers of the Federal Government 

The query read in part,  “We observed that the sum of N 11,366,800.00 (£36,200) was paid to a company for advertorial to Business Year Nigeria 2015 Yearbook. The payment was marred with the following irregularities: payment was made to a third-party company, instead of directly to who made the request; the payment was not subjected to both Withholding and Value Added Tax as required by law; authorisation letter of 12th February 2015 from The Business Year to pay the third-party company was not signed and as such has no legal backing for its implementation;  there was no evidence that the exchange rate was used to convert the money from Pounds to Naira emanated from Central Bank of Nigeria; Award letter was not produced for examination. This infraction was due to the failure of the Director-General to strictly comply with the provision of extant laws and regulations, especially as it relates to issues bordering on the Procurement Act. 

“Under no circumstances should the payment for the supply of goods or services be made to third party. Payments must be in line with the provisions in the contract agreement and E-Payment principles.  We recommend that the Director-General be made to account for the infractions and sanctioned “

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