Atiku's Company's Debate Tears House Of Reps Apart Today

Nigeria's House of Representatives was today thrown into a state of commotion during discussions over allegations of unlawful termination of the working agreement between Atiku Abubakar's company (INTELS) and the Federal government.

The federal lawmakers were sharply divided over the allegations and counter allegations between Intels Nigeria Limited and the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA.

The argument, which centered on the legality or otherwise of the said termination, pitched members against one another, with lawmakers of the opposition PDP condemning the action, while members of the ruling APC argued in its favour.

Atiku is a member of APC for now: PDP supports him, APC against him. Interesting.

The House, however, resolved to probe the controversy surrounding the withdrawal of the FG from the agreement following a motion on matters of urgent public importance brought by Honourable Diri Douye (PDP, Bayelsa).

Hon. Douye had moved the motion urging the House to investigate the process of terminating the Ports management agreement/contract entered into by the Federal Government and Intels, a company linked to former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar sine year 2000.

‎He informed the House that Intels has carried out logistic services in Apapa, Onne and Warri Ports for 17 years and wondered why the NPA would suddenly wake up to terminate an existing agreement that was meant to run a course of 25 years.

Douye argued: “It’s known that Intels Nigeria has over 7,000 Nigerians in its employment and these Nigerians have other dependants. And if we allow these people to lose their jobs, the economy will suffer further blow and setbacks.

“Terminating contracts of this nature where the company had taken foreign loans to the tune of $900 million to build up the ports must be given serious and thorough considerations.

“And we must also as a House insist that in taking such decisions, the Nigerian Local Content Act must be followed, and that due process is also followed,” he added.

Supporting the motion, Hon. Sergius Ogun (PDP, Edo), informed the House that workers affected by the termination of the agreement are protesting, saying that “how can an agreement that has existed for years and showing the world that concessioning works in Nigeria, be cancelled in one day?

“Intels is hiring Nigerians and if they must cancel that concession, they must follow due process. We want to keep taking oil in the Niger Delta and we are shutting down what gives the youths some level of livelihood, and when this happens, they go and start destroying installations,” Ogun argued.

Other lawmakers who spoke in favour of the motion include Hon. Hassan Saleh (APC, Benue), 

In an amendment to the prayers, Hon. Mohammed Sani Abdul (APC, Bauchi), suggested that “while the House investigates the issue on ground, the Company should be left alone to continue its operations based on the existing agreement.”