Civil Society Network demands public release of forensic report of alleged missing $20bn at NNPC

Posted by Amechi Obiakpu, Lagos | 25 February 2015 | 3,073 times

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Civil Society Network Against Corruption (CSNAC), an anti-corruption organisation, has demanded the public release of the forensic audit report of the alleged missing $20 billion by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). It said that it is mandatory that Nigerians know the outcome of the audit following its conclusion, by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC), a renowned international audit company.

NNPC had been accused by erstwhile Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Lamido Sanusi of not remitting $49 billion being accruals from crude oil sales between January 2012 and July 2013, to the Federation Account. The unremitted sum was later reviewed downwards to $20 billion by the former CBN Governor, after reconciliation meetings between the apex bank, NNPC and Finance Ministry. 

The result of PwC’s forensic auditing of NNPC’s financial activities released February 5 however put the unremitted sum at $1.48bn.

In a letter signed by its Chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, and addressed to PwC, CSNAC said in accordance with Section 1 (1) of the FoI Act 2011, Nigerians have a right to access the full report of the forensic audit.

He wrote in the letter dated 20th February, 2015: “According to a news report published on THISDAY Live, dated 20th February, 2015, your firm, Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC), a renowned international audit company, ‘was contracted by the Federal Government of Nigeria to undertake a forensic audit of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), following claims of the corporation’s failure to remit $49.8 billion, being accruals from crude oil sales between January 2012 and July 2013, to the Federation Account by the erstwhile Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and now Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi II. The unremitted sum, according to this news report, was later reviewed to $20 billion by the former CBN Governor, after reconciliation meetings between the apex bank, NNPC and Finance Ministry. These irregularities informed the federal government’s invitation of PwC to undertake forensic auditing of the financial activities of NNPC.

“Having completed and presented the content of the report to the President, the Auditor-General of the Federation, only addressed the public on highlights of the report without availing the public with substance of the report or publish the entire report.”

Quoting the FoI Act 2011, CSNAC said, Section 1(1) “Notwithstanding anything contained in any other Act, law or regulation, the right of any person to access or request information, whether or not contained in any written form, which is in the custody or possession of any public official, agency or institution however described, is established.

“As a private Organisation that has rendered public service to the Nigerian government and paid from the public coffers for this service, Section 2(7) of the Nigerian Freedom of Information Act, 2011, therefore applies to PwC.

“Section 2(7) Public institutions are all authorities whether executive, legislative or judicial agencies, ministries, and extra-ministerial departments of the government, together with all corporations established by law and all companies in which government has a controlling interest, and private companies utilising public funds, providing public services or performing public.

“As an internationally reputed firm with integrity in standard and discipline, we shall look forward to receiving this report promptly, and in any event, within 7 (seven) days after this application is received, as provided for in Section 4 and 4a of the FoI Act 2011.”

Suraj quoted Section 4, which requires that “where information is applied for under this Act, the public institution to which the application is made shall, subject to sections 6, 7, and 8 of this Act, within 7 days after the application is received.”

•Photo shows CSNAC Chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju.


Source: News Express

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