Reps summon Customs General over alleged N250m fraud

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Committee of the House of Representatives has requested for the presence of the Controller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Col. Hameed Ali (retd.), over an alleged N250m insurance fraud committed by the NCS in connivance with some insurance brokers.

The committee, which is chaired by Mr. Adekunle Akinlade, said there were “fraudulent practices” perpetrated by insurance firms in connivance with Ministries, Departments and Agencies to defraud the Federal Government of billions of naira annually in insurance premiums.

Details of the committee’s proceedings, which correspondents obtained on Sunday, indicated that the Customs’ CG was summoned in respect of the agency’s insurance transactions between 2013 and 2015.

The panel observed that the NCS had a “record” of engaging unlicensed insurance brokers, while there were questionable payments to insurance firms.

The Federal Government reportedly paid over N200bn in insurance premiums between 2013 and 2015, with at least “N910m” going to unlicensed brokerage firms.

Akinlade stated, “The issue is that these companies got business consistently just because some people in the MDAs are being paid. Since the commencement of this investigation, we have sent invitations to the NCS, but they have refused to make submission to the committee.

“We are summoning the CG to come and explain why he refused to honour the committee and why it engaged services of unlicensed brokers and agents that were paid over a quarter of a billion naira.

“Many of the insurance companies that have appeared, deliberately gave us wrong information, thinking that we can never go to the extent of scrutinising every detail in their submissions.”

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