Crude Oil Sale: Federal Government Says $49.8bn Not Missing

The Federal Government has said that the $49.8 billion which was accruable from crude oil sales from January 2012 to July 2013 is not missing after all.

This declaration came after a 2-day reconciliation meeting between the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Ministries of Finance, Petroleum Resources and other agencies.

At a joint press briefing by the Ministry of Finance, Petroleum Ministry and the CBN, Minister of Finance and coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, declared that the missing $49.8 billion has been accounted for.

She said that “the bulk of the $49.8billion has been accounted for and that is what the reconciliation exercise is about, so it is very clear that this is not missing”.

The declaration is said to have followed evidence provided by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC), which indicated that the alarm raised by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) over the “missing” $49.8 billion may have been a ruse.

Lawmaker asks Alison-Madueke to resign

A member of the House of Representatives, Robinson Uwak (PDP, Akwa Ibom State), has urged the Minister of Petroleum resources, Mrs Deizana Alison-Madueke, to resign.

Speaking in Abuja, the lawmaker said considering the fraud that occurred in the petroleum sector under her watch, as revealed by the recent house probe of the fuel subsidy, the honourable thing for her to do, would be to resign.

He said he was not accusing the minister of corruption.

The House had resumed consideration of the fuel subsidy probe report on Wednesday, when Mr. Robinson Uwak, raised a point of order on privilege.

He drew the attention of the House to public opinion suggesting that lawmakers were ‘shielding’ Alison-Madueke from prosecution.

Uwak said, “the people of my constituency and Nigerians out there have been bombarding me with calls since yesterday (Tuesday).

“They have accused the House of shielding the minister. I hereby call for the resignation of the Minister of Petroleum Resources.”


Economic council urges the quick passage of PIB bill

The National Economic Council (NEC) has resolved to work towards the early passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).

The council at the end of its monthly meeting in Abuja on Thursday directed the Minister of Petroleum resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, to present a roadmap on the conclusion and finalisation of the bill to enable the president present it as a matter of urgency to the national assembly.

It also agreed to set up a committee headed by the Minister of Petroleum resources to monitor the nation’s oil exports and imports in order to establish a reliable system for accurate data generation on revenue from oil.

Briefing state house correspondents after the meeting the Akwa Ibom state governor Godswill Akpabio stated that the membership of the committee include the Accountant-General of the federation, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and some governors.

He said that the National Economic Council also agreed on strengthening the laws against oil bunkering to save the nation from the massive revenue loss in the sector which has been put at N1billion monthly.

On the new tax regime the council directed the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) to work with governors and come up with a reliable structure for tax drive urging the president, the governors and their deputies to pay tax on official emoluments.