The Senate has reprimanded the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) for the meagre remittance of N44.5billion into the Consolidated Revenue Fund in 2019 out of N2.4trillion generated.
Members of the Senate Joint Committee on Finance and National Planning in a public hearing on projected revenues estimated in the 2021 – 2023 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) lampooned the agency on Friday for the inexcusable expenses of its revenue in spite of being partly funded by the Federal government.
The chairman of the committee, Senator Olamilekan Adeola had ealier requested to have records of the agency’s internally generated revenues in 2019 and projections for 2021.
In his response, the Director of DPR, Engr. Sarki Auwalu who was represented by the Head of Planning of the agency, Johnson Ajewole revealed that a total of N2.4trillion was generated by DPR in 2019 but N44 5billion was remitted into the Consolidated Revenue Fund.
The revelation irked members of the committee who demanded an explanation for the wide gap between the revenue generated and what was remitted describing the submission has unacceptable.
Responding, the Head of Finance and Accounts of the Petroleum Agency, Mrs Lilian Ufondu in a bid to explain the shortfalls created more questions than answers.
According to her, out of the N2.4trillion generated by DPR in 2019, N88billion was removed as 4% collection fee out of which N5.72billion was also remitted while the balance was used for overhead.
Questions to her by the Committee Chairman and members on what happened to the over N2trillion balance were not satisfactorily answered as she was only able to mention overhead and operational costs without specific figures tied to them.
Angered by the submissions and alleged disjointed records presentations, the committee directed that the agency must reappear before it unfailingly on Tuesday and must be led by its Director, Sarki Auwalu who was alleged to have travelled abroad for an official assignment.