-Four directors at the National Theatre have been in EFCC custody.
-They were said to have diverted government revenue into private use.
Four directors of the National Theatre in Lagos, arrested on Wednesday by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for allegedly diverting revenue and statutory allocation funds.
The directors including a woman, who were taken from their Iganmu office did not remit revenues generated from the use of facilities at the National Theatre into the Federal Government Treasury Single Account (TSA).
It was learnt that the directors embezzled N24 million annual rent paid by Nigerian Breweries for its 20 branded kiosks and N9 million paid for the use of National Theatre during the ‘Lagos @ 50’ celebrations.
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The directors according to PMNews, were whisked away by EFCC after they refused to honour their invitation for interrogation in the office of the Artistic Director and Chief Executive of National Theatre, Mr Tar Ukoh.
The National Theatre boss had earlier promised to wipe out corruption in the agency during his speech at the Anti Corruption rally.
“Culture must kill corruption before corruption kills culture,” Ukoh said.
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Henry Udubuisi, Vice President, National Theatre Chapter of AUPCTRE, in his reaction, said that the union was in support of the management decision to get eradicate corruption in the agency.
AUPCTRE is the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporationns, Civil Service, Technical and Recreational Services.
“The position of the union is that we are solidly behind the management to fight corruption in National Theatre. We are also proud to be associated with it. We are using this medium to appreciate the management on its “Change must begin with me project.
“The Artistic Director means well; he wants to address some administrative impunity here.
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“He is not victimising anybody, he is just asking them to be accountable for what has happened for those who has questions to answer. We need someone like him here to stamp out corruption. The union will never condone corruption; infact the union stands against corruption and we are happy that the management key into our vision,” he said.
“The union has been fighting corruption even before the new management came in, especially when there was a proposal on the sale of the theatre. We fought against what we regarded to as administrative impunity under the then Chief Executive but all what we got was dismissal.
“Most of the executive members of the union were dismissed for standing against corruption and the sale of the only cultural iconic building in Nigeria,” he said.