The House of Representatives on Monday declined the consideration of the 2020 budget estimates of Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) sequel to the Chief Executive Officer/MD, Alhaji Umaru Ibrahim’s disregard for President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive prohibiting oversea travels during the 2020 budget defence.
Chairman, House Committee on Insurance and Actuarial, Hon. Darlington Nwokocha, who declared the Committee’s resolution explained that section 88 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) empowers the House to investigate any Agency of government with the view to look into the records on any matters as well as expose corruption.
While noting that the power of the Committee and the House is not in question regarding law-making and oversight function, Hon. Nwokocha maintained that the Committee decision is tied to the rules of engagement and the established understanding with the Executive.
While acknowledging the formal letter notifying the Committee of the NDIC CEO’s absence, maintained that there are certain questions requiring the response of the Chief accounting officer, adding that it would amount to wasting legislative hours for the subordinates to take such responsibility.
In his intervention, Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Jaha Ahmed who raised a Point of Order, harped on the need for the accounting officer of the Corporation to give a comprehensive budget defence to the Committee as provided by extant laws.
He argued that the presence of the NDIC Chief Executive Officer will help to expedite action on the consideration and passage of the 2020 budget, whenever he is prepared to appear before the Committee.
After ruling on the motion raised by the Deputy Chairman, NDIC Executive Director, Prince Agbatise Eradianwa, who led the delegation explained that the Chief Executive Officer of NDIC who could not attend the budget defence due to ill-health had on Saturday travelled overseas.
While pleading for a review of the resolution passed by the Committee to enable him to present the budget documents sent last Friday to the Committee, Prince Eradianwa pleaded the resolve of the Corporation to work harmoniously with the Committee as the 8th Assembly.
He also unveiled plans to hold an interactive retreat for the Committee where the problems and aspirations of the Corporation will be presented to the lawmakers, adding that the Corporation cannot achieve its set objectives and intentions without the support of the Committee.
Prince Eradianwa also apologised for any misconception that the lawmakers may have about the Corporation.
But in a swift reaction to the issue of misconception raised by the NDIC Executive Director, Hon. Nwokocha argued that there was no misconception nor ill-feelings against the Corporation as alluded to, adding that the common denominator between the Committee and the Corporation is national development.
To this end, the Committee adjourned sine die.