Nigeria: Audit Uncovers Non-Remittances of Funds By Oil Companies

20 August 2019

The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has said a forensic audit it started in November, 2018, has revealed huge amounts of non-remittance to the Nigerian Content Development Fund (NCDF) by oil, gas and service companies operating in the country.

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote, who revealed this in Abuja at a media engagement yesterday, said at the moment, some companies had owned up to their indebtedness and had started addressing their infractions.

Daily Trust reports that the NCDF was established by Section 104 of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act of 2010 and provides that one per cent of every contract in the upstream sector of the oil and gas industry shall be deducted at source and paid into the fund.

NCDMB manages the fund and employs it for projects, programmes and activities directed at increasing Nigerian content in the oil and gas industry. Remittances of the NCDF are usually made in the currency of the contract, mainly naira, dollar, pound and euro and to the NCDF TSA with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

Engr. Wabote who did not mention the amount that has been uncovered and the names of the defaulting companies, however, said the audit was a process that was still ongoing but that details of it would be made available to the public once it was concluded later in the year.

The NCDMB boss said few companies had remained recalcitrant to remitting payments to the fund.

He, therefore, said, "We have concluded plans to hand over such companies to the EFCC for prosecution," adding that, "Our doors are open to companies that want to come up with structured payment plans, but we would not entertain pleas to write off any indebtedness."

Enumerating some of the agency's initiatives and accomplishments since he assumed office as the Executive Secretary on November 1, 2016, Wabote said NCDMB had deployed and driven several impactful initiatives geared towards achieving milestones on its "10-Year Road Map".

Part of the achievement is the progress achieved so far on discussions with investors on the establishment of LPG (cooking gas) cylinders manufacturing plant, LPG depots and gas processing facilities.

"We are particularly interested in the establishment of an Inland LPG Depot in Abuja to complement Federal Government's LPG Penetration Initiative," he said, adding that the agency was close to concluding partnership agreements covering development of hydrocarbon processing and manufacturing facilities in some states such as Cross River, Delta, Edo, Lagos and Oyo.

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