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Buhari confirms Bello-koko as NPA substantive MD, fate of Usman Bala unknown

By Oludare Mayowa

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday approved the appointment of Mohammed Bello Koko as the substantive managing director for the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).

“Prior to this appointment, Koko was the executive director, finance & administration of NPA,” a statement from the ministry of Transportationstated on Tuesday.

The statement noted that Bello-Koko appointment as substantive MD of the NPA takes immediate effect.

“Upon the very strong recommendation of Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation,  President Muhammadu Buhari,  today Tuesday approved the appointment of Mr. Mohammed Bello-Koko as the substantive Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA)’

“In canvassing for the appointee, the Minister cited several reasons,  among which is the revenue performance of the NPA under Mr. Koko,” presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu wrote in a Tweet.

In May last year, the federal government had suspended the managing director of the NPA Hadiza Bala Usman and ordered an investigation into the affairs of the authority.

The president has also directed Bello-Koko, the authority’s Executive Director in charge of Finance and Administration to act as the managing director.

A statement by the presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu said the president approved the recommendation of the minister of Transportation to set up an administrative panel of inquiry to investigate the management of the NPA.

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The panel was headed by the Director, Maritime Services of the Ministry of Transportation while the Deputy Director, Legal of the same ministry will serve as Secretary.

To-date, the panel sitting or its report have not seen the light of the day neither has the hitherto managing directror of the authority indicted for any offence.

With the confirmation of Bello-Koko as the substantive managing director of the port authority, the appointment of the erstwhile MD, Bala Usman has effectively been terminated.

In a prelude to the removal of Bala Usman as NPA MD, the Minister of Transportion, Rotimi Amaechi had accused the erstwhile managing director of failure to remit over N165 billion into the federation account.

In a memo to the president, tittled, “Remittance of operating surplus to the consolidated revenue fund account by the Nigerian Ports Authority from 2016 to date”, the Minister of Transportation had prayed Buhari to order an audit into the accounts and operations of the NPA.

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