Leadership (Abuja)

Nigeria: Senate to Probe Unremitted U.S.$49.8 BIllion Oil Revenue

Photo: Daily Trust
Oil barrels, Nigeria

The Senate is set to probe startling disclosures by Nigeria's Central Bank Governor (CBN), Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) systematically failed to remit $49.8 billion crude oil sales proceeds between January 2012 and July 2013.

The CBN governor in a letter dated September 25, 2013 to President Goodluck Jonathan, said for all crude oil sales within the period, the NNPC paid only 24 per cent proceeds into the Federation Account, and diverted or stole the remaining 76 per cent-totaling N8 trillion.

The Upper House on Wednesday, mandated its Committee on Finance to begin a full-scale investigation into the alleged missing $49.8 billion. The committee is expected to submit a report of its finding in seven days.

Yesterday, Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Planning and Budgeting, Senator Olubunmi Adetunbi (Ekiti/APC) raised a point of order backed by Order 42 of the Senate Standing Rules when he briefed Senators of Sanusi's allegations. He called for a probe.

"There has been a raging debate on the issue of missing money from the coffers of the federal government of Nigeria. Today (Wednesday), all papers carried the report on $49.8 billion that has not been remitted to the Federation Account."

"Mr President, as a parliament, this is a very grave issue. The parliament owes a duty or responsibility to the public to ensure that we get to the bottom of this issue for purposes of public information and for purposes of integrity of this parliament, because appropriation and revenue is the major responsibility of this parliament," Senator Adetunbi said.

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