Connect with us

News

Reps invite Emefiele, Ahmed over alleged illegal withdrawal of $21bn NLNG funds

Published

on

The House of Representatives has invited Godwin Emefiele, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN); Zainab Ahmed, the minister of finance, budget and national planning as well as Ahmed Idris, the accountant-general of the federation over the purported illegal withdrawal of $21 billion from the Nigeria Liquefied and Natural Gas Limited (NLNG)’s Dividends Account from 1999 to 2020.

The committee on public accounts of the lower legislative arm put out the summons following a remark by Mele Kyari, the group managing director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) that the deductions from the NLNG Dividends Account were endorsed by the CBN, the Federal Ministry of Finance and the NNPC.

Umar Ajiya, the NNPC chief financial officer, who deputised for Mr Kyari, noted that the proceeds from the dividends account represented the Nigerian government’s share of revenues from the oil earnings distributed among federal and state governments.

“All withdrawals were based on approved mandates of the relevant authorities. As far as NNPC is concerned, investments in NLNG were done on behalf of the Federal Government.

Read also: Reps summon NNPC, NLNG over alleged illegal $1.05bn withdrawals

“I was the treasurer of NLNG, so I was aware of the Federal Government’s investment in the project. The same matter came up at the FEC and was referred to a committee headed by the Governor of Kaduna State,” he said.

He further stated that the Nigerian government, whose interest NNPC represented in the NLNG joint venture, was the rightful owner of the investment, meaning that the investment accrued to the Nigerian government and not the federation account.

“There is no question of illegal withdrawal. Nobody can withdraw from the account, illegally; the CBN Governor can be invited to attest to that.”

He added that the investment proceeds were overseen, distributed or utilised at the behest of the Nigerian government.

Join the conversation

Opinions

Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism

Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.

As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.

If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.

Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.

Donate Now

Investigations