The Center for Combating Corruption and Open Leadership (CACOL) supported the decision of the Nigerian Senate to investigate the alleged missing $ 9.5 million interest accruing to the Federation account from the investment. the tax on petroleum profits (PPT).
The PPT applies to operations upstream of the petroleum industry. It relates in particular to rents, royalties, margins and profit-sharing elements associated with leases for oil production, prospecting and exploration.
The Senate examines the report of the Federation’s Auditor General, Anthony Ayine, who concluded that the principal sums deposited, the content and the interest rate, were shrouded in secrecy.
The Senate Public Accounts Committee (SPAC) ordered Central Bank of Nigeria Governor Godwin Emefiele to appear on Thursday.
In a statement on Wednesday, Debo Adeniran, chairman of CACOL, quoted the AugF which said during the review of transfers to the surplus accounts of PPT / foreign royalties and foreign surplus gross, that it was observed that in 2016, $ 6 million and $ 3.5 million had been credited to TPP / foreign royalties and foreign gross surplus account as interest on fund investments.
“The authority to place the funds which produced the above interest totaling $ 9.5 million in the deposit account, the principal sums deposited, the tenor and the interest rate were not made available for verification.
“This observation was also the subject of my reports since 2017 without any positive response from the Central Bank of Nigeria. The records made available for verification further revealed that the balance of foreign PPT / royalties and foreign crude surplus accounts as of December 28, 2016 was $ 0.00 and $ 251,826 respectively, ”Ayine said.
CACOL lamented how most MDAs blatantly ignore directives from the National Assembly and the country’s Auditor General (AuGF) on submitting audited accounts for the necessary verification and review.
The body observed that the trend is not peculiar to MDAs only, as both the Nigerian Constitution of 1999 (as amended) and other existing financial laws are either inadequate or contradictory to meet the modern challenges posed by corruption in the country.
“The reason for this inconsistency is not overstated as deliberate loopholes exist in our statutes and other regulatory texts that not only allow impunities, but also make corruption attractive and tempting since most of our anti-corruption approach aims to capture after the crime (s) rather than aiming at prevention as is done in healthier and more advanced climates.
“With the advancement of technology today, most looting or financial manipulation would be effectively prevented and detected ab initio if we focused more on prevention and greater accountability and independence of the bodies responsible for monitoring and urgently adopt e-governance.
“There is no doubt about it, in line with our previous calls for the audit law and other useful laws that have already demanded a quick review and a passage in the National Assembly for ages receive the proper attention so that the fight against official corruption could become a thing of the past in the country, ”the statement added.
Oil tax interest: CACOL calls for investigation into alleged “ $ 9.5 million missing ”