The House of Representatives has begun investigation into crude oil sales by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), as well as the Corporation’s other sources of revenue from January 2018 to date.
To this end, the House yesterday passed a resolution to set up an ad-hoc committee, with a mandate to carry out the investigation and report back its findings within two weeks. The panel is also expected to probe the volume of oil production and ascertain the exchange rate at which the NNPC carry out the transactions.
This was sequel to a motion by Hon. Nicholas Ossai, who said there was “urgent need to investigate alleged NNPC’s current under-remittance to the federation account.”
The lawmaker, while giving details on why he brought up the motion, recalled that the monthly meeting of the Federal Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) could not hold in June because the NNPC under remitted about N100 billion to the Federation Account, adding that it was not the first time that NNPC was accused of failing to fully remit revenues due to the federation’s coffers, a development he said had resulted in the slowdown of governance all through the tiers.
According to him, the Corporation was usurping the powers of the parliament by expending funds not appropriated by the National Assembly, arguing that it was time to ensure that one particular organisation does not become “a clog in the wheel of progress” for Nigeria.
While several members were in the affirmative that the investigation be carried out, Hon. Aminu Shagari however added a dramatic dimension to the debate, when he recalled that a similar probe was held during the sixth Assembly of the House, with no concrete outcome
“What happened to the reports of the previous committee that was set up? Would the Ad-hoc committee have the guts to do the work? I was in the previous committee in the 6th Assembly and we saw a lot of things.
“I am warning that the members of the committee should watch themselves closely, because the NNPC will take them one by one. And when they come for meetings, people will begin to speak from different sides of their mouths,” he said.