Omokore Visits EFCC

OmokoreThe Chairman of Atlantic Energy, Mr Olajide Omokore, has been explaining his encounter with the EFCC.

He told Channels Television that he visited the EFCC office in Abuja on his own volition and that he was not arrested or picked up by the commission’s agents.

He explained that during his long conversation, he was not told of any charges related to corruption or money laundering.

Reuters News Agency had reported that Mr Omokore was arrested for charges related to corruption and money laundering.

UK Court Seizes Diezani’s Money

DiezaniBritain’s National Crime Agency (NCA) has obtained permission from the Westminster Magistrate’s Court on Marylebone Road, London to temporarily seize 27,000 pounds that is about $41,000 from former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke.

An Administrative Officer at Westminster Magistrates’ Court said that the NCA had applied to the court for an order to seize various sums of money in relation to Alison-Madueke and two other women for up to six months.

No details were given on the link between the three women.

Earlier reports on Monday suggested that the former minister had appeared in court, but this turned out to be incorrect.

Mrs. Alison-Madueke also failed to appear at the Charing Cross Police Station where she was expected to report on Monday according to reports from Friday night when she was granted bail.

Conflicting Reports Trail Diezani Alison-Madueke’s Court Appearance

Alison-MaduekeThere are conflicting reports about the appearance of Nigeria’s former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, at the Westminster Magistrate Court in London on Monday.

At the Charing Cross Police Station, in London on Monday, our correspondent, Doris Okenwa, did not see any sign of Mrs Alison-Madueke early in the morning.

She waited for several hours before also visiting the magistrate court without any trace of the former minister.

This afternoon, however, BBC correspondent, Sam Eiranty, tweeted that he sighted the former minister and her mother at the magistrate court early in the morning.

No detail was given as to whether she has been charged and when she is due to return to court.

Mrs Allison-Madueke was arrested on Friday morning but was granted bail and asked to return to court on Monday.

She was arrested by the National Crime Agency along with four other people and is being investigated for alleged bribery, corruption and money laundering.

She denied any wrong doing when accused by the then Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, who is now the Emir of Kano, of alleged misappropriation of $20 billion oil money.

Mrs Alison-Madueke was Petroleum Minister between 2010 and 2015.

 

Former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke Granted Bail

Alison-Madueke
Nigeria’s former Petroleum Minister, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, who was arrested in London on Friday, has been granted bail.

She was granted bail by a Magistrate Court in London after she had been detained for several hours.

Reports say that the former minister’s international passport has been seized.

The UK National Crime Agency on its official website says that its recently formed International Corruption Unit has arrested five people across London as part of an investigation into suspected bribery and money laundering offences.

Mrs Alison-Madueke was arrested in London on Friday along with four other persons in relation to corruption allegations being investigated by the UK National Crime Agency.

Meanwhile, the Presidency in Nigeria has declined to comment on the arrest of the former Petroleum Minister.

Presidency Silent On Diezani Alison-Madueke’s Arrest

Alison-Madueke The Presidency in Nigeria has declined to comment on the arrest of former Petroleum Minister, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke.

When asked to confirm if the arrest was based on the request of the Nigerian Government, the response from the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, was “I will get back to you”.

Mrs Alison-Madueke was arrested in London on Friday along with four other persons in relation to corruption allegations being investigated by the UK National Crime Agency.

Former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke Arrested In UK

Diezani The immediate past Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, has been arrested in London.

Mrs Alison-Madueke was arrested along with four other persons in relation to corruption allegations being investigated by the UK National Crime Agency.

Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke has been in London for some time, reportedly on health grounds.

Under her watch the then CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, alleged missing funds in the Nigerian National Petroleum Commission (NNPC), amounting to 20 billion dollars.

Few days ago at the UN General Assembly, President Muhammadu Buhari had made it clear that those who misappropriated billions of naira belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation would soon be prosecuted.

It is not yet known if Mrs Allison-Madueke’s arrest was based on a request from the Nigerian Government.

It was alleged earlier in the year that the former Petroleum Minister, who was one of the closest to the administration of former President Jonathan, would flee the country, to avoid being prosecuted over allegations of fraud, especially in the NNPC.

This was following the defeat of the former President at the Presidential election in April.

She, at the time, denied seeking asylum in any part of the world, stating that the Jonathan administration had done a lot in the Oil and Gas industry that cannot be rubbished by malicious claims.

Nigeria’s Petroleum Minister, Alison-Madueke Elected OPEC President

OPECNigeria’s Petroleum Minister, Mrs Diezani Allison Madueke, has been elected as President of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Alison-Madueke’s election as President of OPEC took place on Thursday at the ongoing 166th ordinary meeting of the Organisation, taking place in Vienna, Austria.

She becomes the first female to be elected into that position, and replaces Libya’s Vice Prime Minister for Corporations, Abdourhman Atahar Al-Ahirish, who was occupying the position.

Before her election, Mrs Alison-Madueke was the alternate president of OPEC and is expected to immediately begin to serve her one-year term at the helm of OPEC affairs.

It is expected that OPEC, during its ongoing 166th meeting, would make key decisions that could halt the dwindling price of crude oil.

Diezani K. Alison-Madueke, born 6 December 1960, became Nigeria’s Minister of Transportation on July 26, 2007. She was moved to Mines and Steel Development in 2008, and in April 2010 was appointed Minister of Petroleum Resources.

In accordance with its Statute, the mission of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, is to coordinate and unify the petroleum policies of its Member Countries and ensure the stabilization of oil markets in order to secure an efficient, economic and regular supply of petroleum to consumers, a steady income to producers and a fair return on capital for those investing in the petroleum industry.

NSCDC In Kogi Parades Petroleum Vandals

NSCDC pipeline arrestKogi State Command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps has paraded two suspects who are involved in petroleum pipeline vandalism.

The two suspects; Micheal Urom and Obi Kelechi, were said to have been arrested in a forest in Geba with two loaded tankers filled with substance suspected to be crude oil at about 2am.

The State Commandant of the NSCDC, Adesuyi Dayo, who paraded them at the NSCDC State Command Headquarters in Lokoja, told newsmen that the suspects were caught at the scene of crime, but on sighting his men some of them took to their heels while the two paraded were arrested.

One of the  suspects, 27 year old Micheal Urom, who hails from Ebonyi State, said that he was a former staff of Dangote before he was laid off his job, and he was in search of another job when he got this one.

Mr Adesuyi Dayo said that vandalism of petroleum pipeline and oil theft remained a major destruction to the country’s economy which needs to be tackled, calling on Nigerians to cooperate with security agencies in fighting the menace.

While also warning those involved in petroleum pipeline vandalism in the state to desist from the act, he vowed that as the new head of the Kogi Command of the NSCDC, he would leave no stone unturned towards ensuring that the state is rid of the crime.

Having promised that the suspects would be prosecuted according to the law, he called on people in the state to give useful information to his command which would help in tracking down more of those involved in the illicit act.

Vandals Bust Another Pipeline In Lagos

Suspected pipeline vandals have breached a petroleum product pipeline belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in Epe.
This was disclosed to Channels Television in a telephone interview with the Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Shem Obasheye.

Vandalized pipeline

“My boys told me that they were going to Epe, and actually when they got to Epe, the pipeline at Epe has been busted. The vandals ran away,” he said.

Officials of the Civil Defence Corps according to Mr Obasheye recovered eleven 50 litres containing of PMS at the scene of the busted pipeline. He however said none of the vandals were apprehended.

No fewer than three suspected oil thieves were last Saturday killed after an NNPC pipeline was gutted by fire at Arepo, Ogun state south west Nigeria. The fire is suspected to have been caused by activities from vandals in the area.


The fire occured at the same spot where vandals operated last August and three NNPC engineers were killed by suspected vandals in the process of fixing the pipeline and putting out the fire.

Ribadu urges FG to implement his committee’s recommendations

The Chairman of the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force, Nuhu Ribadu on Monday called on the Federal Government to fully implement the report of his committee for it to demonstrate its sincerity to bring sanity to the oil industry in the country and expose those benefitting from the non-remittance of oil sales.

Mr Ribadu while speaking with newsmen after a condolence on former Kwara State governor, Bukola Saraki over the death of his father explained that the implementation of the report would sanitize the oil sector of cabals who do not wish the country well.

The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) presidential candidate in the 2011 elections added that the country needs a clean and better oil industry that will cater for majority of Nigerians and expressed optimism that the country would be great if the leaders are serious on fighting corruption.

He said his committee has done a good job with recommendations if implemented will lead to cleaner oil industry in the country.

ACN accuses FG of sabotaging Ribadu’s work

The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has accused the Federal Government of deliberately sabotaging the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force, headed by the former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Nuhu Ribadu, following the controversy that marred the presentation of the task force’s report to President Goodluck Jonathan last Friday.

In a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary of the ACN, Lai Mohammed on Sunday in the Lagos, the party said the decision to appoint two members of the committee, Steve Oronsaye and Bernard Otti, to positions in the NNPC while the task force was still working on its assignment is a deliberate booby trap.

It said if the Federal Government did not have any ulterior motive; it would have waited for the task force to complete its assignment before naming Mr Oronsaye into the board of the NNPC and Mr Otti as the Director of Finance of the same body.

“Alternatively, both men should have resigned their membership of the committee the moment they were given the plum jobs to avoid the apparent conflict of interest. The fact that they stayed on, only to disparage the report of the task force so openly and ferociously at the end, is the clearest indication yet that they were meant to play that exact role of spoilers,” the party said.

The party said the temerity with which the duo sought to denigrate the report of the task force in the presence of the President of the Federal Republic showed that they must have been acting a well-prepared script.

“All that these two men needed to have done, if indeed they did not agree with the report of the task force, was to write a minority report and present such to the President, instead of engaging in theatrics as they did at the presentation, right in front of the whole world.

“Unfortunately, the President’s efforts to downplay the whole disagreement and give the dissenters a soft landing did more to accentuate the damage done to the report by the two men. The President’s statement, that becoming board members of NNPC does not disqualify them from being members of the task force, is an indication of his innermost thoughts on this issue,” it said.

The ACN however said it was not surprised at how things turned out with the task force, having previously warned, in a statement it issued on 8 February 2012, that naming credible people like Mr Ribadu to head the task force might just be part of government’s ploy to poach credible personalities from the opposition just so it can decimate it (opposition) and also tarnish the well-earned credibility of such personalities.

“Among our observations in that press statement, we had said: ‘There is also the possibility that booby-traps will be deliberately set for such credible personalities to guarantee their failure in their stated assignment, after which they will be ridiculed and dumped like an ordinary chump’.” the party said, adding: ”We hate to say our fears have been justified.”

It reiterated its earlier statement that the Federal Government is not interested in any genuine effort to clean up the corruption and mess in the oil sector, and that is merely engaging in window dressing by setting up committees upon committees, whose outcomes will eventually add to the growing list of reports that are now gathering dust at the presidency.

Presidency refutes ACN’s claim

Meanwhile the presidency has refuted claims by ACN that the federal government is deliberately sabotaging the petroleum revenue special task force, headed by Mr. Ribadu, following the controversy that marred the presentation of the task force’s report last Friday.

A statement issued by the presidency says the ACN’s allegation, falls into a familiar pattern by the party to tell lies and discredit every initiative of President Goodluck Jonathan.

The statement from the presidency affirmed that President Jonathan remains committed to the war against corruption and that every step his administration has taken has been in this direction, and that has not changed.

The presidency goes on to deploy what it describes as an attempt by ACN to accuse it of having had a hand in the open dissension among members of the Ribadu committee.

The ACN had also claimed that Mr. Steve Oronsaye and Mr. Bernard Otti’s appointment onto the board of the NNPC while serving on the Ribadu committee compromised their position.

The opposition party had in a statement on Sunday yesterday insisted that the federal government is not interested in any genuine effort to clean up the corruption and mess in the oil sector, and that is merely engaging in window dressing by setting up committees upon committees, whose outcomes will eventually add to the growing list of reports that are now gathering dust at the presidency.

 

Read the full Ribadu’s report here.

Why we can’t build more refineries in Nigeria – Senator Abe

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum Resources (downstream), Magnus Abe on Friday said the reasons why investors are not willing to build refineries in Nigeria is because it is not profitable.

Mr Abe, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, said there are refineries in Sierra Leone and Amsterdam that are operated with Nigeria’s money.

“People go to the bank to get guarantee, buy crude from Nigeria and send to these refineries and the refineries are paid. Whether subsidy or no subsidy is irrelevant to that refinery,” he said.

The Senator said there is no relationship between deregulation and the building of more refineries in Nigeria. “These issues are totally not related,” he said.

“To me, why we are not building refineries in Nigeria may be one, because of the infrastructural and security challenges but more importantly, maybe we are not taking enough advantage of the fact that we are actually producing crude in this country to give guarantees to people to say listen if you build your refinery in Nigeria we promise you that you will have first charge access to our crude, we will sell to you who is refining in Nigeria before we sell to anybody who is taking it out,” he added.

Responding to the question on why the existing refineries are not functioning optimally, Mr Abe said “there is a clear incentive to the refineries not to operate at a 100 percent capacity.

“If I own a refinery in Nigeria and then you give me product and I can go and sell those products outside, I’ll probably make more money than if I refine it here, how is that an incentive to me to refine the product here?”