Reps question PTAD for paying over N379m to recover UK funds

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On Thursday, the House of Representatives announced preparations to probe the operations of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) in relation to the payment of approximately N379 million to agents in order to recover a £25 million investment fund in the United Kingdom.

The question was posed by House Committee Chairman James Faleke during the ongoing Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper MTEF/FSP interactive session. The National Assembly houses Ministries, Departments, and Agencies.

The senator questioned why the agency would use agents to repatriate monies invested with Crown Agents of the United Kingdom in such large amounts, despite worldwide best practices for fund recovery.
He questioned agency officials on the propriety of wasting pensioners’ and taxpayers’ money on such recoveries on agents, since the global practice is to use the agency’s legal department for such recoveries.

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According to him, the House Committee is worried about the predicament of retirees in the country who are supposed to be beneficiaries of such invested monies but are due many months of salary and allowance arrears by the agency.

“PTAD is not a revenue generating agency but there is this fund that is meant for pensioners that we are concerned about.”How do you recover such funds using a recovery agent? It was claimed that retirees owed N30 million in pension arrears?”

Dr. Chioma Ejikeme, Executive Secretary of PTAD, indicated in her statement that the money in question were intended to be sent to the Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria (CRIN) and the Federal Civil Service Commission (FCSC).

According to her, the agency received presidential clearance in 2018 to transfer monies from Crown Agents to the Agency.

Dr. Ejikeme went on to say that one million pounds of the recovered cash were utilized to offset the liabilities of several privatized government entities.

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