Ngige reacts Oshiomhole's threats, says APC chairman ignorant of procurement laws

Ngige reacts Oshiomhole's threats, says APC chairman ignorant of procurement laws

- The minister of labour Chris Ngige, says accusations that he is failing to inaugurate the board of the NSITF because he is awarding contracts are false

- He explains that a minister who is not a member of the ministerial tenders board for the award of contracts in any ministry does not award contracts

- A report says Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara decided to remain in APC to bid for time

The minister of labour and employment, Chris Ngige, has reacted to the threat from the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, who had threatened to expel Ngige or any other minister that failed to carry out his directive from the party.

Speaking in a statement signed by the director of press of the ministry of labour and employment, Samuel Olowookere, the minister said anyone accusing him of failing to inaugurate the board of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) because he was awarding contracts is ignorant of the procurement act, as neither him nor the board had the right to award contracts, Vanguard reports.

Ngige noted that the accusation against him was a blatant falsehood and was prompted by either fertile ignorance or outright mischief or both by the peddlers of the accusation.

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He clarified that the Ministerial Tenders Board (MTB) for the award of contracts in any ministry is made up of the permanent secretary as chairman and his directors, while in the parastatals, the parastatals tenders board consists of the chief executive officer (Director General or Managing Director) and his directors. He said a minister is not a member and therefore does not award contracts.

Nigige also explained that members of the board of directors being non-members of the tenders board of the parastatals do not also award contracts.

He said it then amounts to ignorance for anyone to allege that part of the reasons for the delay in the inauguration of the board of the NSITF or any parastatal was because the minister was assuming the role of the board as regards the award of contracts.

The statement read in part: "When the threshold of the award is above a parastatal, such contracts are referred to the MTB for final approval. Such also is the case with the Ministerial Tenders Board threshold which is referred to the Bureau for Public Procurement and from there, to the Council of Ministers called the Federal Executive Council for treatment and ratification. So in effect, the Federal Executive Council is not a contract awarding body and hence Ministers do not award contracts stricto senso!

“It is our humble view therefore that those in authority should be versed in little basic issues that guide public governance so as to be properly guided in their utterances to avoid unnecessary character assassination and unfortunate misinformation of the general public.

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"Once more, the Honourable minister wishes to state that the reason for the delayed inauguration of the Board of the NSITF was to enable the Administrative Panel of Inquiry set up to probe a frightening degree of corruption amounting to over 48 billion Naira out of which N5billion disappeared in a day without vouchers, complete its assignment.

“The panel has submitted its report while the committee implementing same report is already empaneled. It will finish its work very soon to pave the way for the inauguration of the Board of Directors."

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Meanwhile, in another report, it has been learnt that the president of the Senate and the speaker of the House of Representatives, Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara respectively, have decided to remain in the All Progressives Congress (APC) for a reason.

The duo refused to join their defecting colleagues on Tuesday, July 24, despite reportedly being among members of the ruling party who had recently had grievances. Daily Trust reports that all the lawmakers from Kwara state and a few loyalists to Dogara from Bauchi moved into the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Daily Trust reports that all the lawmakers from Kwara state and a few loyalists to Dogara from Bauchi moved into the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

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Source: Naija.ng

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