This Day (Lagos)

15 October 2012

Nigeria: Fuel Subsidy Scam - FG Gives Anti-Graft Agencies Order to Arrest Suspects

Strong indication emerged at the weekend that the Presidency has directed anti-graft agencies to go after all those involved in the fuel subsidy scam, with a warning that nobody should be spared.

The directive, it was gathered was a result of the arrest of the Managing Director of Capital Oil and Gas Limited, Mr Ifeanyi Uba.

Uba who is known to be a very close ally of powerful figures in government, was recently arrested and detained by the Special Fraud Unit of the Nigeria Police over his involvement in the fuel subsidy scam.

The exclusion of some big names in the initial arraignment of some marketers over the subsidy scam had led to allegations that the Federal Government was shielding some big names involved in the scam and targeting only the small fries.

THISDAY checks revealed that the arrest of Uba who is seen as an untouchable is to send signals to all that the government has no sacred cows and that all those involved in the scam will face the wrath of the law.

A Presidency source who spoke to THISDAY yesterday said: "The arrest of Uba is to send a signal to all those who think that they can always manipulate the system.

"Those who think we are going after low elements can now see how serious we are. The arrest of Uba is a game changer and I can tell you that this administration will do more in term of fishing out those fraudulent elements," the source said.

The source further said: "Those who think they are untouchables, those who think they can sabotage government after getting involved in the scam can learn from Uba. We are not going to spare anyone found wanting."

It was also gathered that the administration is pushing to ensure that all those arrested are not left off the hook as feared by many Nigerians with the official assuring that "the law will take its course and we will ensure diligent prosecutions.

"For the cynics, this is the time for them to be convinced about the seriousness with which we take this anti-corruption war. We are taken the war to a new level and the citizens should be rest assured that the level of seriousness is now at an all time high levels.

"More arrests are coming. Investigations are going on all fronts and in due course, more actions will be taken by the government. Nigerians should no longer think that the anti-corruption war is a joke. We are dead serious," the source declared.

Meanwhile the arrest of Uba has reportedly created panic among many marketers especially those that are indicted but are yet to be arrested.

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