Subsidy probe: EFCC may disregard Reps’ report
Indications have emerged that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission may disregard the report of the House of Representatives’ ad hoc committee on the administration of fuel subsidy.
Investigations by our correspondents on Wednesday also showed that the commission would soon round off its investigations into the management of fuel subsidy without considering the report of the ad hoc committee on the same.
A reliable source at the commission told one of our correspondents that some of those indicted were waiting for EFCC’s independent investigation into the management of the subsidy before taking any action.
He said, “The commission will soon finish its investigation. What the House has done is part of its oversight functions. The report will not be useful in prosecuting the culprits and EFCC has not received the report.”
The ad hoc committee, had in its report submitted on April 18, stated the subsidy administration was compromised.
It recommended that a total of N1.7bn be refunded.
It asked government agencies, namely the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation; Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency; the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and 72 firms, to refund N1.7trn.
The report also criticised the Chairman of the Board of the PPPRA from 2009 to 2011, and other members of the board during the period for allegedly opening “the floodgate of the (subsidy) bazaar.”
The House, at the debate on the report on Tuesday had demanded that a former PDP National Chairman, Dr. Ahmadu Alli, who was the chairman of the PPPRA be prosecuted.
Ali had described the report as a pure misrepresentation of facts.
The PDP, which reacted on April 25, a week after the report was submitted, said that only guilty should be made to suffer.
A member of the PDP’s NWC told our correspondent that the party was waiting for the EFCC’s investigation.
He said, “We are not panicking because we know we did not use subsidy funds for our campaigns. Although some of our members have been indicted, there is no way the funds could be traced to the party or President Goodluck Jonathan’s campaign.”
The EFCC Acting Head of Media and Publicity in the commission, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, said on the telephone that the report had nothing to do with EFCC investigations on the management of the subsidy.
He said,”We have not got an official report from the National Assembly but that has nothing to do with our investigations.
“The House of reps report, if and when it is communicated to us, will complement the investigation that we have on the ground.”
May 3, 2012 by Niyi Odebode and Fidelis Soriwei