By Lawrence Olaoye
Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mrs Hadiza Bala Usman, has said that corruption is fighting back in her agency.
Usman who spoke to newsmen yesterday after briefing the Federal Executive Council (FEC) chaired by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo also said she had been able to save the country billions of dollars by removing monopoly in movement of oil and gas cargo.
Asked whether corruption is fighting back in her organisation, she said “Oh definitely corruption is pushing back, its faiths back all the time. We have had instances where corruption is pushing back and we have remain resolute with the support of Mr. President in assisting us to fight corrupt practices in Nigerian Ports Authority.”
On the works done in NPA, she said “we have been able to execute transparency and elimination of corrupt practices, we serve the need to ensure that whatever government legal with an entity there is full compliance.
We have noted the Treasury Single Account, we have had entities complied to the TSA, we have also made our budget very transparent. We believe in building institutions and we have done tremendous work in deploying Human Resources capacities within our systems.”
On now much had been saved so far, Usman said “I will say we have saved billions of dollars in terms of ensuring that corrupt practices are eliminated. One of the key things the government has been able to do is to remove the monopoly of the oil and gas cargo, now in the Nigerian oil and gas you are able to take cargoes anywhere leading to any location in the country. Hitherto designated terminals got priority considerations to the extent that only those terminals had access to oil and gas cargo which made exploration of oil and gas in the country very expensive. This has tremendously assisted, we have saved billions and billions of dollars in crude exploration following the removal of the monopoly by President Muhammadu Buhari of oil and gas cargo designation.”
On the sudden rise in revenue generated by the NOA, she said “It has to do with ensuring that debts are paid, ensuring that there is full compliance and deployment of the Treasury Single Account, these are the things we have been able to do to block revenue leakages and ensure that we have seamless accounting processes.
Asked for her mission at the Villa, she said “I am at the State House today requesting FEC to approve the dredging works for escravos channel in Warri and its navigation. Is a challenge we have had in the Nigerian ports we need to ensure that the the channels into the Warri ports are dredged.”
She explained the economic implications of her request thus “It will fundamentally change the fortunes of Warri ports, it will expand the utilization of our eastern ports, we believe in the need to ensure that all ports locations are given the seamless access by providing dredging works and that is what we are here to do today.”