The House of Representatives, yesterday, set up an ad hoc committee to investigate the non-remittance of $13.9 billion into the Federation Account by the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.
The committee was set up following a motion brought to the floor of the House by Haruna Manu, PDP, Taraba, entitled Urgent need to verify and ascertain the volume and value of crude oil sales from January 2013 to date.
The ad hoc committee has, therefore, been mandated to investigate the volume and value of crude oil sales and remittances into the Federation Account from January 2013 to date by NNPC and report back to the House within four weeks.
This followed recent revelations that NNPC has remitted only $7 billion out of $20.9 billion of crude oil sales this year.
It will be recalled that barely a week ago, Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, reportedly alleged the disappearance of $5 billion from the Excess Crude Account and asked for explanations from relevant government agencies.
Manu rested his submissions on Sections 162 (1) and 162 (10) of the constitution, which states inter alia that ”the Federation shall maintain a special account to be called the Federation Account into which shall be paid all revenues collected by the Government of the Federation, except the proceeds from the personal income tax of the personnel of the armed forces of the Federation, the Nigeria Police Force, the ministry or department of government charged with the responsibility for Foreign Affairs and the residents of the Federal Capital Territory.”
Manu, who noted that “a shortfall of 13 billion US Dollars is unaccounted for in the period of January to August 2013,” added that “from September to date, no proper accounts have been rendered by the NNPC or records kept to show the actual amount and volume of crude oil sales by the NNPC.”
He said there have been lingering issues of accountability and arbitrary management of oil revenue by NNPC, saying there was a need to compel the corporation to render accounts of how much it derived from crude oil sales within the period and the actual amount it paid into the Federation Account.
Contributing to the motion, Aminu Suleiman (PDP, Kano) and Ossai Nicholas Ossai (PDP, Delta) argued that the investigation has become necessary considering the volume of the amount involved, saying an ad hoc committee would do a good job.
On their part, Hassan El-Badawy (APC, Yobe) and Yakubu Balogun (APC, Lagos) said the revelation was disturbing and such an act by NNPC jeopardises Nigeria’s future, arguing that the matter goes beyond the period raised by the mover of the motion to about five years.
Also, Warman Ogoriba (PDP, Bayelsa) argued that “I share the sentiments of my colleagues that there is no need for an ad hoc committee to look into the matter.
“I also have issues with the prayers of the mover of the motion that relate to finance and why are we always setting up ad hoc committees when we have substantive committees?“
After Ogoriba’s presentation, the Presiding Officer, Speaker of the House, Aminu Tambuwal, put the debate to a voice and the ayes had it.
The motion was seconded by Ralph Nnanna (PDP, Imo State).
Kwara Governor, Abdulrazaq Declares 24-hour Curfew
Following the outbreak of violence in some quarters of the State, Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State has declared a 24-hour Curfew on the state starting on Saturday.
Governor Abdulrazaq made this known in a statewide broadcast on Friday night.
Recall that on Friday some residents of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital stormed the warehouses where the government stored COVID-19 palliatives expected to be distributed to citizens.
Also Read: BREAKING: Lagos Government Relaxes Curfew
The warehouses, located at the cargo warehouse of the International airport in Ilorin as well as the agro-mall located in the Sango area of the state were totally ransacked as residents struggled to pack as much food items as they could.
Abdulrazaq said, “Lives are being threatened. Businesses are being looted. Public properties have been targeted. This is unacceptable. It is not who we are.
“To curb these acts of criminalities, I hereby declare a 24-hour curfew in Ilorin metropolis from midnight today October 23rd, 2020. This is in line with Sections 1, 2, and 4 of the Public Order Act Chapter 382 Laws of Federation of Nigeria 2004.
“People are urged to stay indoors in compliance with this curfew. This will be reviewed as we watch developments.
“Our observation is that what has happened today is not a protest, it cannot be defended under any guide, it was a pure act of criminality as some people are hiding under the guise of nationwide protest.”
Lagos Policemen Brutalise PUNCH Journalists For Covering #EndSARS Protest
Two PUNCH journalists, Femi Dawodu and Segun Odunayo, were on Wednesday brutalised by policemen guarding the Lagos State House of Assembly in Ikeja.
The duo had gone to cover events around the Alausa area, a major demonstration ground of the #EndSARS protesters calling for a total overhaul of the Nigeria Police Force.
According to the PUNCH, both Odunayo and Dawodu were recording a live video of activities in the area when the policemen accosted them and ordered them to stop the recording.
After showing the policemen their identity cards, indicating that they are journalists covering #EndSARS protests and monitoring compliance with the government-imposed curfew, the policemen became annoyed and pounced on them.
Odunayo said the policemen tortured them for four hours, adding that they stripped them of their clothes, laid them on the floor, beat them with a stick and guns, and took a video recording of them while torturing them at the Lagos State House of Assembly.
Odunayo said, “Femi and I were at the Secretariat in Alausa around 7 am and were doing a live video of the activities going on in the area. We were heading back to the expressway when a group of armed policemen accosted us at the Lagos State House of Assembly roundabout and immediately collected our phones. We showed them our ID cards, but they refused to let us go.
“What got the policemen annoyed was that we saw them using a stick and a rubber to beat a young man, and during the live video, they heard me saying that they were beating someone. So, after they arrested us, they tortured us and demanded that we should do another live video denying the statement, but we refused.
“Each Time we refused, they slapped us, used a stick to beat us, used the butt of their guns to hit our heads and bodies after stripping us of our clothes. All they wanted was for us to do another live broadcast to claim that we lied and we didn’t because we told the truth.”
Dawodu said it took the intervention of the state Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi before they were released at the Alausa Police Station, adding that before their release, the policemen took their details, including their addresses, took a video record of them and threatened to go after them if any negative report was published about what happened.
He said, “The policemen were transferring the aggression of what is happening regarding the #EndSARS protest on us. They later took us to the Divisional Police Station in Alausa, and if not for the DPO, the policemen guarding the LSHA that arrested us would have done more grievous things to us.
“The PPRO and the DPO later spoke with them, and we were released.
“But despite his intervention, we were told to write statements. They collected our details, address, took video recordings of us making false statements during the torture, and threatened to use it to blackmail and go after us if we end up doing any bad report against them.”
CCTV At Lekki Toll Gate Was Not Removed -Lekki Concession Company Says
Lekki Concession Company in their press release has debunked the rumour that the Lekki Toll Gate CCTV camera was not removed.
According to the press release by the company which condemns the unlawful killings of the peaceful protesters said no one gave the order for the removal of the Closed Circuit Television System as the CCTV is still intact as of the time of this report.
Speaking further, the concession company revealed that if the CCTV was to be removed, it would require the use of machinery to reach the heights that they have been installed.
Read the release report below;
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