Senate Wednesday said that arrangements have been concluded to hand over companies found culpable in its investigation of alleged N30 trillion revenue scam in the import and export value chain to Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for prosecution.
Chairman of the Senate Joint Committee on Customs, Excise and Tariff and Marine Transport, Senator Hope Uzodinma, stated this in Abuja while briefing reporters on the activities of his committee.
Uzodinma noted that companies to be handed over to the EFCC were “those discovered to have manipulated the foreign exchange procedure and others involved in money laundering, round tripping and abuse of foreign exchange manual.”
He said the committee would pass all established evidence against the companies to the EFCC for immediate prosecution.
Uzodinma said that companies with established cases of infractions of import, export value chain would be referred to the Nigeria Customs Service for blacklisting.
He said, “We have also established another department for investigation, which is abuse of fiscal policies in the Federal Ministry of Finance.
“Most of these companies that have applied and received approval as manufacturers of different products, assemblers of various products but import finished goods in the name of CKD will be charged for economic crime.
“We are going to follow up the prosecution with all evidences available to us.
“As we are about concluding our investigation on the 60 selected companies being currently investigated, it is very clear that so much collectable revenues are still hanging.
“These are monies that government would have used to ease governance and provide necessary infrastructure and amenities to the citizenry.
“So, this committee will not sit back and allow the economy to crumble. This is just 60 selected companies. We are visiting over 1000 companies.’’
Uzodinma noted that the 60 companies in its first phase of investigation, the committee had been able to interact with 50 while 10 of the companies refused to appear.
He insisted that the committee would ensure that the companies were fished out by the relevant security agencies to face justice.
On the funds recovered so far, he said a significant amount of money had been returned by some companies.
He said “Many of those companies have paid partially. I know that with the evidences we have against them we are confident that these companies are now aware that we caught them.
“We cannot let go of what belongs to government.”
He added that the committee took time to carry out preliminary investigation because it needed to establish the necessary benchmark.
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.’’