The Inter-Ministerial Committee on the Disposal of Forfeited Assets to the Federal Government, on Thursday, said no fewer than 2000 auctioneers bided for the sales of assets forfeited to the Federal Government.

The chairman of the Sub-committee on the sales of the forfeited assets, Engr Bello Nasir, disclosed this during the opening of bids for the engagement of auctioneers for the disposal of assets forfeited to the Federal Government.

Shortly before conducting a symbolic opening of the bids, the chairman of the Interministerial Committee and Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Justice, Dayo Apata (SAN), said the committee identified the forfeited assets to be sold in 25 locations across the country, except places plagued with violence and insecurity.

He said: “Estate Surveyors and Valuers had inspected the forfeited assets in order to ensure that the assets are sold at market value, in line with international best practice.”

Apata added that the bid opening followed an advertisement placed on May 10. 2021 for auctioneers to show interest and assured the public of transparency in the exercise, even as he added that the criteria set out by his Committee will be strictly followed in the selection of auctioneers.

He said any Estate Surveyor or valuer who participated in the valuation of the properties to be sold will not be allowed to bid as they cannot bid for what they have valued and that, members of the committee will not be part of the auctioneers.

The submission of the bid formally closed at 12 noon on, Thursday and the process of bidding commenced immediately with the chairman of the subcommittee, Bello Nasir from the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), identifying bidders based on their lot.

It would be recalled that the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), inaugurated the Dayo Apata led Inter-Ministerial Committee on November 19 last year.

Malami, while inaugurating the committee said that the initiative was borne out of the president’s directive in October 2018 following recommendations of the Presidential Audit Committee on Recovery and Management of Stolen Assets and a need for efficient management of the assets.

“It is aimed at ensuring proper coordination of the disposal of the federal government’s assets and for promoting a uniform, harmonised and transparent procedure to safeguard the assets recovered by the relevant agencies in line with the anti-corruption drive of this administration,” he said.

The minister added that the committee is responsible for the development of its targets in order to measure its performance and respond to ongoing asset management audit and asset performance reports.

“Your mandate is to ensure the expedient disposal of all Federal Government forfeited assets and generate revenue for the Federal Government of Nigeria.

Members of the committee included the representatives of the Office of the Chief of Staff to the President; the Federal Ministry of Justice; Federal Ministry of Finance; Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Auditor-General of the Federation, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Independent Corrupt Practices (and other related offences) Commission.

They also include the representatives of Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy, Nigeria Police, Nigeria Security Civil Defence Corps, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Department of State Security, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Department of Petroleum Resources, National Oil Spillage, Detection and Response Agency, Bureau of Public Procurement, and the Civil Society Organisation.

The committee was given six months to dispose all Federal Government forfeited assets.

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