By Mitchelle Uzorka, 05:50am
The House of Representatives Committee on Navy investigating the controversial USD195million deep blue project has queried the Nigerian Maritime Administration Agency (NIMASA) over the purchase of arms.
The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Navy, Yusuf Gagdi, while reacting to the submission made by the Director-General of NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh, questioned the procurement of military equipment by the agency.
He asked the NIMASA DG questions like “We don’t have coast guard, why are you procuring military equipment and keeping them in your custody preempting that you would have coast guard to hand over to them?
“Do you think it is safe for this country to keep military equipment in your custody with the sole aim of establishing an agency, predetermining that Mr President would approve the establishment of the coast guard? What would be consequent effects of keeping the equipment in your custody?” Gagdi asked Jamoh.
In defending the actions taken by NIMASA, Jamoh, said that the contract attracted a management fee of 10 per cent placed at USD19.5million. He claimed that the total sum of $195 million as approved by the Federal Government fell short of logistical expenditure.
The deep blue project is a three-year maritime security contract awarded by the Federal Government to a foreign private company named HLS International Limited.