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Reps panel summons Amaechi over maritime academy

A House of Representatives adhoc panel has summoned the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, over the crisis rocking the Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Oron, Akwa Ibom State.

The adhoc panel, chaired by Yuguda Hassan Kila (APC, Jigawa), is investigating the circumstances that led to Amaechi’s decision to appoint a six-man interim management committee to manage the affairs of the academy.

The panel is also to investigate the restructuring plan and the activities of the interim committee as well as the legality of the minister’s action.

Also summoned alongside the minister are the chairman of the interim committee, Chief Adebayo Sarumi and the acting rector of the academy, Duja Effedua. The academy has been without a substantive rector since 2015.

In separate letters of summon to Amaechi, Sarumi and Effedua, the adhoc panel asked the trio to appear before it unfailingly on February 27 to respond to some questions.

In a motion last year, the House said the minister’s decision was against the provisions of the Act establishing the academy as he lacks the powers to do so.

The lawmakers said the Act vested the powers to manage the affairs of the academy on a duly appointed governing council, rector, staff and officers of the academy without any provision of an interim committee.

It was gathered that this is the first time the academy would have an interim management in its several decades of existence.

Amaechi had in September last year inaugurated the interim committee to implement report of an earlier assignment for the repositioning of the academy.

The committee had submitted its report and made recommendations on the best way to restructure and reposition the academy for efficiency.

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