THE Senate yesterday adopted the recommendations of its ad-hoc committee that investigated the activities of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) between 1999 and 2011. The recommendations included the sacking of the Director-General (DG), Bolanle Onagoruwa, and the indictment of some of her predecessors in office, including Malam Nasir el-Rufai.
In a report considered yesterday by the chamber, the panel recommended among other things: “That the former Directors-General, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, Dr. Julius Bala and Mrs. Irene Nkechi Chigbue, should be reprimanded by the NCP for seeking approval directly from the President instead of the NCP as stipulated in the Public Enterprises Act 1999. “That Dr. Julius Bala should be investigated by anti-graft agencies for giving approval to Folio Communication Limited for the illegal sale of assets of Daily Times of Nigeria Plc and that the Director-General, Bolanle Onagoruwa, be relieved of her appointment for gross incompetence in the management of the BPE and for illegal and fraudulent sale of the five per cent of Federal Government of Nigeria’s residual shares in Eleme Petrochemicals Company Limited (EPCL).”
The panel, headed by Senator Ahmed Lawan, also recommended “That Section 1(3) of the Public Enterprises (Privatisation and Commercialisation) Act 1999, which states that the National Council on Privatisation (in this Act referred to as ‘the Council’) established under Section 8 of this Act may, from time to time, by order published in the Gazette alter, add, delete or amend the provisions of the First Schedule to this Act, should be amended because it contradicts the power of the National Assembly to make laws under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.”