Jonathan encourages corruption in NNPC —Tax Payers •Group accuses Pres of paying lip service to anti-graft war

Posted by News Express | 23 January 2014 | 3,422 times

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President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday came under the hammer for allegedly encouraging corruption in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and for being unserious with the anti-graft war.

The knocks were delivered by the Tax Payers Association (TAPAN), which said in a statement issued in Abuja, the Nigerian capital: “The President is just paying lip service to corruption. First it was Stella Oduah and the bullet-proof cars scandal, and now no one can explain to Nigerian tax payers how $10 billion varnished from the NNPC.”

TAPAN in the statement signed by the Chairman, Board of Trustees, Comrade Valentine Nzekwe, and the President, Mr. Phillip Ilukhulo, called for the amendment of Section 85(2) of the 1999 Constitution which empowers the Auditor-General of the Federation or anyone authorised by him to audit “the public accounts of the Federation and of all offices and courts of the Federation” and submit his report to the National Assembly, but says the office cannot audit the NNPC but provide NNPC and similar bodies with a list of qualified external auditors to choose from, guide on fees to pay the external auditors, comment on their accounts and the external auditors’ reports.

The association wondered why the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, is not being applauded for blowing the whistle on the NNPC but rather being with-hunted.

TAPAN did not spare Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and the Petroleum Minister, Deziani Allison-Madueke. It accused the Finance Minister of trying to discredit the CBN boss instead of explaining to Nigerians how $10 billion oil revenue allegedly varnished from the NNPC’s coffers.

Said TAPAN: “When the CBN Governor blew the whistle, Okonjo-Iweala treid to discredit him, she told us the accounts had been harmonised, at the end it was revealed $10 billion was still missing. And instead of President Jonathan to summon the MD of the NNPC, Petroleum Minister to explain this discrepancy, the Finance Minister simply said the NNPC must account as if the NNPC is a private company.”

TAPAN urged the National Assembly to look into the statutes including the constitution that shields the NNPC from scrutiny.

Source: News Express

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