EFCC to prosecute erring firms in alleged N30tr duty scam
The Senate says it is handing over the companies that were found wanting in its investigation of an alleged N30 trillion duty scam to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for prosecution.
Chairman of the Joint Committee on Customs, Excise and Tariff and Marine Transport, Hope Uzodinma, told newsmen yesterday in Abuja that the affected entities to face prosecution include those that manipulated foreign exchange processes, laundered money and engaged in round tripping.
He said the committee would tender available documents to the anti-graft agency to expedite their trial, adding that the affected establishments are to be referred to the Nigeria Customs Service for blacklisting.
His words: “We have also established another aspect of the investigation, which is the abuse of fiscal policies from the Federal Ministry of Finance.
“Most of these companies, that have applied and gotten approval as manufacturers and assemblers of assorted products, but imported finished goods, will be charged for economic crime.
“As we are about concluding our investigation on the 60 companies, it is very clear that so much collectable revenues are still hanging. These are funds that government would have used to ease governance and provide necessary infrastructure and amenities to the citizenry.”
He continued: “This committee will not sit back and allow the economy to crumble. This are just 60 selected firms. We are visiting over 1000 companies.”
The federal lawmaker disclosed that of the 60 companies billed for probe, 50 had been interacted with while the rest 10 had been inaccessible.
Uzodinma vowed that the panel would ensure that the firms in question were fished out by security agencies.
He confirmed that a significant amount of money had been refunded by some of the companies.
The panel chair assured that questioning of the remaining firms would be faster, adding that they took time to carry out preliminary findings in order to establish the necessary benchmarks.
He said: “Now that we have all that and the modus operandi has been established, we will put it on auto pilot and it will be faster.’’
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