The House of Representatives has ordered an investigation into 77 oil and gas companies.
The House consequently mandated the Committee on Finance to liaise with relevant agencies to ensure that the 77 Oil and Gas
companies pay the respective accrued debts to the federal government.
Following adoption of a motion brought on the matter by Ahmed Munir Wednesday, Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, directed constitution of a 12-man Ad hoc panel to carry out the investigation, and report its findings back within four weeks.
The House has further urged the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), and the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), to provide necessary data needed to facilitate recovery of debts owed the federal government by oil and gas companies.
Titled : “Urgent Need to Recover Outstanding Debts owed the Federal Government by stated that report by the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) that 77 oil and gas companies operating in Nigeria are owing the federal government over N2.6 trillion.
He said the debts accrued from failure of the firms to remit Petroleum Profit Tax, Company Income Tax, Education Tax, Value Added Tax, Withholding Tax, Royalties, Penalties and Concession on rentals to the federal government.
He said: “Such a huge debt is being overlooked at a critical time when the country needs funding for its annual budget.
It added that if debts are recovered, the money could be used to service some of the federal government’s debts as well as fund up to 16.2 percent of the 2022 budget deficit.
The lawmaker argued that “recovery of the debts is critical in this period of dwindling revenues especially as the COVID-19 pandemic has grossly affected the country’s economy.”