Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has approved the setting up of a “Committee to investigate and audit the financial transactions of the 23 Local Government Councils from May 2018 to May 2019.”
The Membership of the Committee is as follows: Her Excellency Dr Ipalibo Harry Banigo (Chairman), Dr Zaccheus Adango, Barr Isaac Kamalu, Mrs Bunmi Akaakar, Prof Kaniye Ebeku, Mrs Inime Aguma, and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information, Paulinus Nsirim (Secretary).
The committee will be inaugurated by the Governor on Tuesday, 28th May, 2019 by 11am at the Executive Council Chambers of the Government House, Port Harcourt.
What seems to excite journalists however is the inclusion of Nsirim, a top journalist, former chairman of the NUJ and twice chief press secretary to two governors. He is expected to bring his huge experience to bear on the panel to deliver on target.
He is already serving on another panel, an indication that seasoned journalists can make a huge difference.
Some observers have noted that auditors and accountants were not made to head the panel. A source however said the panel is all about putting the rules of spending sie by side with what actually happened and note the difference. Besides, panels have right to invite any professional to handle any aspect but it is the panel that would take responsibility.