By Milcah Tanimu
The Nigerian Senate has initiated a probe into the alleged mismanagement of N10 billion restructuring funds allocated to the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) by the Federal Ministry of Finance. The investigation follows the discovery of irregularities in two NIPOST subsidiaries, namely NIPOST Properties and Development Company and NIPOST Transport and Logistics Services Limited.
The Senate resolution, passed on December 30, 2023, revealed concerns about the illegal transfer of federal government shares in these subsidiaries to private individuals. Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) records indicate that certain officials within the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) and NIPOST were listed as shareholders in these entities.
The Senate deemed these irregularities as illegal and recommended the immediate winding-up and deregistration of the questioned NIPOST subsidiaries. Additionally, the Senate demanded an investigation into the utilization of the N10 billion allocated for NIPOST’s restructuring and recapitalization. If evidence of “injudicious utilization” is found, the Senate has called for the full recovery of the funds.
The alleged malfeasance involves influential individuals potentially gaining control of valuable NIPOST property assets through the inheritance of shares. Concerns were raised about the share transfers disregarding established legal frameworks and the potential for government assets to fall into private hands.
Individuals involved in the alleged share transfers reportedly reassigned their shares in NIPOST Transport and Logistics to government entities to address the infraction. However, controversies persist regarding shareholding arrangements and changes in the ownership structure of NIPOST Properties and Development Company.
A government official emphasized the importance of the Senate’s call for investigation and corrective actions, stating that the NIPOST scandal raises questions about corporate governance and asset protection within public institutions. The official underscored the need for comprehensive and transparent results to assure the Nigerian public that national assets are being safeguarded with integrity.