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NIGERIA: CACOL Endorses House of Reps’ Investigation

MT Tuma

The Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) has censured the Nigerian National Petroleum (NNPC) and a subsidiary of the corporation, Pipeline and Products Marketing Company (PPMC) for the move to sell off M. T. Tuma, an oil vessel owned by PPMC, after over $60million has allegedly been wasted on its maintenance.

The House of Representatives yesterday raised alarm over the plan.  In a motion sponsored by Mudashiru Akinlabi, it was revealed that the vessel left the shores of Nigeria in 2007 for a routine dry docking which was to last three months but was abandoned for almost six years, at a cost to the nation of about $5million. The vessel found its way back into the country in May 2012 without the maintenance job being done properly, and incurred about $60million in demurrage and other port charges.

Speaking on behalf of CACOL, its Executive Chairman, Debo Adeniran, urged President Goodluck Jonathan to address the endemic corruption pervading the Nigerian oil sector.

“It is very unfortunate that the NNPC could hold the whole country to ransom without caution from any quarters,” he said.   “It is high time President Goodluck Jonathan put down his feet to address the rot that is bedeviling our oil sector.  Many reports by various committees have revealed that NNPC is a cesspit of corruption in this country.”

He regretted that many contracts and millions have gone down the drain towards the required work on the said vessel without any such work actually being done, and with no heads rolling, only for the NNPC now to put up the vessel up for sale to further fatten the accounts of some government officials and their cronies.

Commending the House of Representatives for its move to investigate the allegations, CACOL urged the committee saddled with the investigation to beam its searchlight on the individuals and companies that have participated directly or indirectly in the frittering exercise and hand the report over to the anti-graft agencies for appropriate prosecution.

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