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Tuesday, June 06, 2017

House of Reps discovers $15bn unremitted oil, gas revenue

- The House of Representatives Adhoc committee investigating allegedly missing 17 billion dollars crude oil and Liquified Natural Gas revenue (LNG) is still sitting - The committee on uncovered 15 billion dollars unremitted revenue into the federation account on Monday, June 5 - This was contained in the two documents submitted by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) at the committee’s sitting The House of Representatives Ad hoc Committee investigating allegedly missing 17 billion dollars crude oil and LNG revenue, on Monday, June 5 uncovered 15 billion dollars (four hundred and seventy-two trillion, one hundred and twenty-five billion naira) unremitted revenue into the federation account. The trace of the alleged missing fund believed to have been stolen and diverted to a foreign destination, was contained in the two documents submitted by the NNPC at the committee’s sitting. While responding to questions from members of the committee, Mr Rabiu Bello, NNPC’s Chief Operating Officer (COO), admitted that there were discrepancies in the documents.

In his presentation earlier, Mr Jack Ukitetu, a Director in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), who represented the bank’s g, explained that the Accountant-General of the Federation approved and determined the money accrued to the Excess Crude Account. Ukitetu said that before 2006, the CBN collected the money on behalf of government’s agencies and remitted into the Federal Reserve Account in New York and charged 0.25 per cent. He however added that after 2006, the oil companies paid directly what was due to the government. On commissions being collected by the apex bank, the director told the lawmakers that the CBN collected 0.25 per cent via foreign exchange allocation and did not charge the federal government as deduction were made from central sales. Meanwhile, Mr Waziri Adio, Executive Secretary of Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (NEITI), who had accused NNPC and CBN of misleading the ad hoc committee, pleaded to withdraw the earlier documents submitted.

He, however, pledged to submit “more damaging documents” on the alleged crude oil theft to the committee on Wednesday, June 7 “which will help in unearthing the unremitted revenue accrued from oil and gas but not remitted”. Speaking earlier, chairman of the committee, Honourable Abdulrazak Namdas, said that the committee would not hesitate to submit its report to the House without the inputs of major Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) which failed to honour the committee’s invitation. Toward this, the committee mandated the CBN and NNPC to submit the audited report of the oil and gas account showing the remitted funds into the Federation Account between 2011 and 2014. The NNPC was also directed to submit the Bill of Laden relating to the 974,721 barrels of crude oil lifted on Oct. 20, 2011 and 961,963 barrels lifted on Oct. 10, 2011. It also included 974, 935 barrels lifted on July 9, 2011 and 974,953 barrels lifted on July 18, 2011 but were not declared.

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