Obasanjo Had Sanusi’s Letter Before It Was Leaked – Data Analyst

A Data and Information Analyst, Babajide Ogunsowo, on Friday averred that former President Olusegun Obasanjo had access to Central Bank of Nigeria governor, Sanusi Lamido’s letter before it was leaked to the public domain because he had referred to the CBN letter in his own letter to President Goodluck Jonathan.

Speaking on Sunrise Daily, Mr Ogunsowo surmised that the fact that Obasanjo had referred to Sanusi’s letter had “influenced some parties to quickly release Sanusi’s letter.”

“It could also be interpreted sublimely that President Obasanjo was also subtly telling President Jonathan that he has access to information that he (Jonathan) has.”

Ogunsowo gave an in-depth analysis of the contents of Obasanjo’s letter, which he insisted was a ‘personal letter’ as opposed to a ‘leadership letter’ which some analysts have pegged it.

Most discussions on-going in the media have focused on the messenger and the message forgetting the ‘critical thirdling’ which is the ‘mess,’ he said, citing Obasanjo’s opening statement which read: “I am constrained to make this an open letter.”

According to Ogunsowo, Obasanjo used the word ‘president’ 40 times, ‘party’ 38 times and ‘PDP’ 31 times indicating the message was concerning him, Jonathan and PDP.

The word ‘terrorism’ was used three times, ‘integrity’ three times, ‘Boko Haram’ six times.

“Compared to other words like democracy that he used 10 times, you could clearly see that from the beginning (based on the texture and analysis) the letter was about him, the party, and the president which is more of a personal letter as opposed to how most analysts are viewing it as a leadership letter.”

Other words are ‘I’ which was used 152 times and he referred to President Jonathan using ‘You’ 148 times.

“He used the word ‘They’ more than he used the word ‘we,’” Ogunsowo added.

“A lot of times in the letter, he had used the words ‘I,’ ‘You’ and ‘They’ pointing to potential people that he felt were opposed to the developments in the country, then he had focused most of his words on the party and on the president.”

“It is important for us as stakeholders not to analyse a personal letter as if it were a leadership letter. Leadership letters would focus more on issues like the economy, for instance Martin Luther King Jnr’s letter; the most words he used were law and segregation.”

Commenting on CBN governor’s letter, he highlighted two similarities including the opening words “I am constrained to.” They also used the same words at the closure of the letter.

Other similarities he listed include the controversy generated, they corresponded with international standard lengths of letters (they were both long), and both letters have also been perceived as leadership letters.

He added that analysts believed that Obasanjo was trying to tell President Jonathan that he was also privy to important exchanges in his cabinet by referring to Sanusi’s letter which was yet to be seen in the public domain.




NNPC Missing Money: Focus On Key Issues, Not Drama – Awoyemi

Following the backlash which trailed CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido’s letter to President Goodluck Jonathan, disclosing that the NNPC is owing $49.8 billion dollars, an amount which analysts have said is enough to cover the nation’s budget for three years, Economist Femi Awoyemi has cautioned Nigerians to focus on the key issues and not the controversial exchange between the two agencies.

Speaking on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Awoyemi stressed that the implication of the disagreements between the two agencies puts the Nigerian economy at stake as well as the integrity of those who occupy offices.

“Sometime in June/July 2013, CBN had the pre-shipment inspection documents and found out that about 600 million barrels of oil had been shipped out, and from his records he would have expected about 65.3 billion dollars but what he got in was about 15 billion dollars.

“Normally, when you have such discrepancies there would be an exchange between the CBN, NNPC and thereafter with the Ministry of Finance.

“If this had been done and they did not get any answer, it is consistent therefore for Central Bank to then escalate the matter. My own interpretation would be that, it was therefore escalated by writing to the president.”

The economist who adjudged the CBN governor’s move as right because all the agencies report to the president, said that all agencies involved should have been summoned by the President considering the amount of money alleged to be missing, which is up to the nation’s budget for 2 years.

“If the figures were true, we are talking about Nigeria’s budget for two years aggregated together,” he said.

“The letter finding its way into the public domain should trigger a sense of responsibility knowing well that it has a huge impact on Nigeria’s economy, financial standing and rating especially to the global society,” Awoyemi said.

Awoyemi said the proper action would have been for authorities to clear the air and allay fears but “since we are in a system where we trust each other less, it took a political undertone.”

Despite the severity of the crisis at hand, many have said there is a disconnection between the two agencies which can create suspicion in the minds of the people.

Reacting to NNPC’s claim that the CBN is ignorant of the structures by which it remits revenue to the Federation Account, Mr Awoyemi said:

“If the Central Bank of Nigeria does not therefore understand the way and manner in which the NNPC is structuring its businesses or enough to understand what it is expecting in the Federation Account or how those monies get back to it, then that’s a key issue Nigerians should be interested in knowing.”

“It is a discrepancy more in processes and understanding of how affairs are conducted,” he added.


Missing Or Not? Analysts Argue On NNPC $49.8 Billion Scandal

In a letter to the President of Nigeria, the Central Bank Governor, Lamido Sanusi alleged that the NNPC failed to remit a total of 49.8 billion dollars into the Federation Account between January 2012 and July 2013.

The news of such an enormous sum missing from the State’s coffers is coming on the heels of accussations against the Federal Government and its purported calm disposition towards corruption in government agencies.

In a swift response to CBN’s claims, NNPC has denied owing the government and accused the Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, of having no knowledge of the structure of remittances of crude oil proceeds.

The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr Andrew Yakubu said that the NNPC was by statutory requirement responsible for direct remittances of only one stream of crude oil lifting – the equity crude, which represents about 27.5 per cent of the entire lifting.

The four other streams including the royalty oil, tax oil, volume for third party financing and NPDC equity volume are paid to other agencies which in turn remit to the government,” Mr Yakubu explained.

Speaking on Channels Television’s Saturday breakfast programme, Sunrise, retired banker, Edwin Ikhinmwin argued that the said amount of money is “somewhere in the name of the Federal Government of Nigeria, maybe it has not reached the CBN yet.”

“It cannot be missing,” he said, adding that such an amount is too huge to be in any account without red flags being raised and so the letter by the CBN governor is only a precautionary measure to ensure that the funds are tracked and remitted to the FAAC.

According to Ikhinmwin, the letter written by the CBN governor hints at politics being played in the latest scandal involving the petroleum agency.

He however said that if the allegations of the CBN turn out true, the governor must be commended for being courageous especially in the face of claims that the Presidency’s body language towards corruption is mild.

However, Lawyer and Petroleum expert, Engineer Yomi Orenuga, raised questions as to the silence of the CBN concerning the unremitted funds within the period which it said the NNPC failed to fulfill its obligations, despite the monthly meetings they hold to balance their accounts.

“Reconciliation is done almost on a monthly basis with all the agencies of government, even from the IOC’s that lift crude oil. You reconcile and give reports of your liftings and productions,” he said.

In a telephone interview, the Group Executive Director, Exploration and Production, NNPC, Abiye Membere, disclosed that the agency had remitted about 18 billion in 2013 but the CBN acknowledged 15.52 billion.

Mr Membere also claimed that the NNPC paid more than 10.3 billion into the FAAC in 2012 and that the CBN did not have the accurate figure.

In his reaction, energy expert, Engineer Bala Zaka said that the whole situation attests to “a lack of congruency and inter-agency data and information sharing” between the two agencies.