Friday, 26 October 2012

Ribadu's Report on Oil Sector Meant to Embarrass President Jonathan

Reuters had on Wednesday quoted extensively from the report, which it said was confidential. The 146-page report, according to Reuters, had stated that a total of $183m (N28.73bn) in signature bonuses paid by oil companies to the federation was missing.

The report said that Ministers of Petroleum Resources between 2008 and 2011 handed out seven discretionary oil licences, but that $183m in signature bonuses was missing from the deals.

Three of the oil licences were said to have been awarded since the current minister, Alison-Madueke, took up her position in 2010.

But to the federal government, the leakage of the report of the Mallam Nuhu Ribadu-led committee that probed oil and gas transactions, which uncovered widespread corruption and abuse of processes, is meant to embarrass the government of President Goodluck Jonathan.

The Presidency said this while reacting to the publication of excerpts from the report by an international news agency, Reuters, and local media outfits on Wednesday.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, said as far as the Federal Government is concerned, the report in the public domain was suspicious.

Here is what Abati said:
“It is strange that government will set up a committee, that report has not been submitted to the authorities that set up the committee and the report will be found on the pages of newspapers. 
“The report cannot be taken as an official document because the proper procedure is for committees set up by the government to submit their reports to the government. In principle, this report in the public domain is suspicious because it was not submitted to the appropriate authority. 
“If every committee set up by government goes above the system to leak reports, there can be chaos. Whoever leaked the report, if indeed the report is genuine, does not mean well. Whoever is behind it is out to embarrass the government.”

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