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Waterways Concessioning: Reps Want Stay Of Action By All Parties Pending Probe

Abuja – The House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions has called on the Federal Government and all other parties involved in the planned $195million concessioning of Nigeria’s waterways to private entities to stay action pending the outcome of its investigation into the matter.

Nkem Abonta (PDP, Abia), chairman of the Committee, made the call following conclusion of arrangements by his committee to commence investigation into a petition before the House asking for a thorough probe into the processes surrounding moves to give the management and security of Nigeria’s waterways to an Israeli security firm despite the existence of statutory agencies like the Nigerian Navy and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA).

It would be recalled that some civil society organizations (CSOs) petitioned the Speaker of the House of Representatives over the alleged $195 million security contract awarded to an Israeli firm to patrol Nigerian waters by the Rotimi Ameachi-led Ministry of Transportation, as well as the Ministry of Defence.

In the petition entitled: ‘Petition on the ceding of Nigerian coastal waterways to HLSI Security Firms and Technologies and commercialisation of the Nigerian Navy to Shorefac Consortium Ltd. This is an aberration to our sovereignty to national security the petitioners stated that:

“Ceding our waterways and the critical national assets therein to foreign firms will definitely undermine the constitutional role of the Nigerian armed forces as prescribed by law and expose our nation to glaring security risks and ridicule among the comity of nations.”

They, therefore, appealed to the Speaker to investigate the $195m contract, particularly the processes leading to the pick of the said company.

Source: MSN