Acrimony, corruption allegations rock Ribadu panel at report submission

Nov.2 (PREMIUM TIMES) — The much awaited presentation of the report of the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force to President Goodluck Jonathan was on Friday marred by acrimonious exchanges by members who openly disagreed over the findings and recommendations contained in the final document submitted.

Chairman of the 20-member Task Force and former Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Nuhu Ribadu, openly disagreed bitterly with his deputy and former Head of Service of the Federation, Steve Oronsaye’s remark that the process adopted during its assignment was flawed.

While Mr. Oronsanye said the report ought to be rejected, as the recommendations were not agreed and accepted by all members, Mr. Ribadu disagreed, accusing him of not participating in the deliberations for the better part of the period the committee worked, as he was busy lobbying to be appointed into the Board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.

Before presenting the report to the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison Madueke for formal submission to the President, Mr. Ribadu had praised Mr. President’s courage in constituting the committee and urged him to carefully implement the recommendations of the report, which he said would help restore confidence in the petroleum industry.

But, no sooner had Mr. Ribadu completed the presentation than Mr. Oronsaye rose to vehemently disagree with the presentation and to dissociate himself from the exercise.

Listen to the full verbal exchanges here.

 

“It is true I am the Vice or deputy Chair. But, I did not start with the Committee until much later, because I was busy with some other assignments. But when I joined, I made certain observations,” Mr. Oronsaye said.

“No matter how elegant a house may be, if the foundation is faulty, it will collapse. In the same vein, if the process is flawed, the outcome of that process would not be sustainable. I want to tell you Mr President, with all sense of responsibility, that the process that has been followed is flawed and the report that has just been submitted to the Honourable Minister is knee-jerk reaction to the directive by Mr. President that the report be submitted today.

“The last time the Committee met in the last week of June or early July, when the draft report was to be considered. It was agreed and accepted in that meeting that a small group be put together to review, modify and return to the report drafting committee before presenting to the whole house. I want to say that did not happen.

“No matter how good the effort may be, for as long as the process is flawed, that report is one that cannot be implemented.

“Let me say this, your Excellency, this other report that was circulated for discussion was actually not accepted by members, and that was the reason the committee was to go back to review, modify and return.

“I thought I should make this view…I don’t even know what the report contains. Therefore, in my view, I don’t think this is a report that should be accepted at this time and I challenge any member of this committee to contradict what I am saying right now. Thank you your Excellency.”

Another member of the Committee, Bon Otti, who also disparaged the report presentation, said he was persuaded to be part of submission, as the final report did not follow a process that involved exhaustive “discussion at every level with the officers responsible to cross check, agree, disagree, reconcile and realign before we produce a finished product.”

But another member of the panel, Sumaila Zubairu, expressed surprise at Mr. Oronsaye and Mr. Otti’s presentations and accused them of refusing to respond to the call for members to submit their comments on the draft report to the Secretariat, apart from when they observed during the meetings that “the report was too harsh.”

Mr. Ribadu in his reaction, expressed disappointment at attempts to discredit the report, saying Mr. Oronsaye and Mr. Otti hardly participated in the deliberations of the committee, as they were busy lobbying to be given plum jobs at the NNPC.

“Mr President, I wasn’t expecting this development, so please do excuse me if I may say a few things,” he said. “This Task Force was set up in February. We started work effectively in March. Most of the members that you have seen here abandoned what they were doing and come here and we worked every single day. We gave everything to it.

“For about three months, Chief Oronsanye never participated one day in the deliberations of this committee. Not even a single day, never. The first time we saw Chief was when at the end of the work when we were talking about recoveries from companies that he jumped in. All the members are here, they can bear me witness. He never participated in this work.

“While others, who were appointed from outside the industry to look at it critically and give you an honest opinion, and ensure the independence of that committee, Chief Oronsanye got himself appointed into the Board of the NNPC.

“The other gentleman, Otti, who spoke became the director of Finance, NNPC, and they decided to, more or less, bully everybody and take over.

“And they wanted us to write for them. Committee members refused. By the time they were appointed (into NNPC) the most honourable thing they could have done could have been to resign from the committee. They refused to resign. Chief (Oronsanye) has not been in this country for a while. He flew in this morning to come and do this before Mr. President. And I think the President deserves more respect than you have done now.”

After receiving the report, President Jonathan promised to review the various presentations before taking a final decision on the recommendations to provide the standard for running the industry.

He advised members who have issues with the report to raise them through Chief of Staff or Minister of Petroleum Resources, adding issues bordering on corruption should directed to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC for investigation.

“The interest of government in setting up committees is to help us to do what is right

“Let me assure Nigerians that government has no interest in hiding anything. This report is not to investigate anybody in government. It is to look at the oil industry and tell government the best approach to maximize our revenue base,” he said.

The Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force was constituted last February with a mandate to work with consultants and experts to determine and verify all petroleum upstream and downstream revenues, including taxes, royalties, due and payable to the Federal Government; take all necessary steps to collect all debts due and owing and to obtain agreements and enforce payment terms by all oil industry operators.

Other mandates include designing a cross debt matrix between all agencies and parastatals of the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources; development of an automated platform to enable effective tracking, monitoring, and online validation of income and debt drivers of all parastatals and agencies in the ministry as well as working with world-class consultants to integrate systems and technology across the production chain to determine and monitor crude oil production and exports, ensuring at all times, the integrity of payments to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

Members of the committee included a one-time President of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, and ace constitutional lawyer, Olisa Agbakoba; Abba Kyari of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Benedicta Molokwu, Supo Sasore, Tony Idigbe, Anthony George-Ikoli, Omolara Ituah, Bon Otti, Olusegun Okunnu, Samaila Zubairu, Ignatius Adegunle, Gerald Ilukwe and two ex-officio officers representing the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS and the Federal Ministry of Finance Incorporated.

Download report of the committee here.

  • Oludotun Malomo

    Uneasy lies the head that wear, the crown. Listening to the accompanying audio, hmmm. The 2 gentlemen raising issues ought to have DIVESTED themselves from the Task Force. Nigeria We Hail Thee. For TRANSFORMATION, Mr President, the BUCK STOPS AT YOUR TABLE.

  • Chikodi

    This Stephen Orosanye of a man is everything that is wrong with Nigerian leaders. I thank God that Nuhu Ribadu has shamed him. How can people be so shameless? I hope Jonathan has the guts to do what is right for once!

    • NAGODI_1

      OROSANYE WAS APPOINTED BY GEJ, DO THE MATHS!

      WHERE IS MALABU?

      WHERE IS FAROUK-OTEDOLA?

      THIS IS WHERE THIS REPORT IS ALSO GOING.

      • Mpitikwelu_na_Ugwu_Awusa

        GEJ appointed Oronsaye and Nagodi appointed Ribadu. Una logic dey tire person.

        • NAGODI_1

          YES! THE DISEASE AND THE MEDICINE. TO PUT IT CLEARLY RIBADO IS TO CONVINCE EVERYBODY HE IS OUT TO FIGHT CORRUPTION, ORANSAYE IS TO PROTECT HIM FROM THE RESULTS THAT HE KNOWS WILL INDICT HIM OR THOSE HE APPOINT. THE KEY THING TO WATCH IS WHAT HE MAKES OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS.

          • Enemona

            What he makes of the recommendations? There’s nothing to watch. This is not the first time. The burial rites of the report and its recommendations have been set in motion.

      • bono

        Are the duo of Farouk and Malabu, Otedola also from the Niger Delta or the North?Fulanis, Ibos and Yorubas involved in the fuel scam or any other crime in Nigeria, don’t go to jail-name one prominent Northerner or Fulani governor jailed in Nigeria since our flag independence because of corruption. Not one. When Ribadu was appointed by Jonathan we were told he had been bribed by him to cover the alleged money laundering charges the Nagodis levelled against the wife of the president! That was the watery views that empty barrels like Nagodi sold to the masses here. Now case don change again-ribadu is the best-the hero of the day-while Orasanya and Oti who stood against the feeble unpatriotic soul of ribadu are the demons-that is Nigeria 4 u

        • NAGODI_1

          THERE IS NOT A SINGLE SOUTHERN GOVERNOR JAILED IN NIGERIA. NORTHERN GOVERNORS STEAL AND KEEP IT IN NIGERIA, YOUR ALAMS AND IBORI THINK THEY CAN FOOL OYINBOS AS WELL AND THAT IS WHY THEY END UP IN JAIL ABROAD.

  • NAGODI_1

    RIBADO CANNOT BE BRIBED AND SHAMED SO LETS CAUSE CONFUSION IN THE COMMITTEE. A PERFECT ALIBI TO DISREGARD THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE COMMITTEE BY A GOVT NECK DEEP IN ALL THE SLEETH UNCOVERED.

  • Mpitikwelu_na_Ugwu_Awusa

    I think a new committee ought to be set up since it is obvious, that this committee were working at cross purpose. I think we should thank Ribadu for his good works but the integrity of this report has been compromised unfortunately.

    • Enemona

      The rent-toy doing his job as usual, defending the indefensible. We all know you by now, go on rent-boy!

      We all know this; people will be sent on a fact-finding mission and when the reports are concluded, the people and the reports are rubbished. The funny thing about this administration is that it’s not creative at all as the same known approach is employed always, no change. This report is gone, it’s dead and buried not because its integrity is in question but because it reported the truth and indicted highly-placed, ‘lowly’, individuals.

      But why, if the reports will be rubbished, will committees be set up in the first place? To show Nigeria that our darling president is fighting corruption. By now there’s no space in the Aso rock library because it’s filled with relics of dead reports.

      It’s time to begin the burial rites, send the attack-dogs and the rent-boys to thisday and other media outlets. Here comes another show of shame, NEXT!

  • Dan Kasa

    First, like many others before it this report is already buried even before its death. Govt should not deceive the public and waste its resources in this kind of unproductive adventure.
    Second, I think this president is the least respected of any president in the history of this country. Sadly this is a reflection of his weaknesses & incompetence. How can members of a committee commit this shameless act in front of a whole president of the country at the point of submitting their report. I think it is the highest form of disrespect to the president. And the disappointing thing is that they have gotten away with it while the report will ultimately be dumped – for the president never said anything about the incident. Better for the president to wake up from his slumber and be a man of himself. This is indeed getting out of hand.

    • NAGODI

      YOU CAN IMAGINE MR. Oronsaye SAYING “THE PRESIDENT SAY WE SHOULD SUBMIT A REPORT. SO WHAT!!!” TO OBJ OR IBB OR EVEN (GOD FORBID ) ABACHA! SOMEBODY WILL LOSE HIS JOB IN THE CASE OF IBB OR OBJ AND SOMEBODY MIGHT LOSE HIS LIFE IN THE CASE OF ABACHA! BUT NOTHING. EVERYBODY GOES HOME WITH A PRESIDENTIAL PAT ON THE BACK.

      • bono

        who started the fuel subsidy scam in Nigeria?

        • NAGODI_1

          …NORTHERN THIEVES LIKE IBB AND ABACHA. JUST HOPE YOU WILL GROW UP AND CALL GEJ A THIEF ALSO FOR ALL THAT HE HAS STOLEN AND ALLOW TO BE STOLEN.

    • bono

      Are the duo of Farouk and Malabu, Otedola also from the Niger Delta or the North?Fulanis, Ibos and Yorubas involved in the fuel scam or any other crime in Nigeria, don’t go to jail-name one prominent Northerner or Fulani governor jailed in Nigeria since our flag independence because of corruption. Not one. When Ribadu was appointed by Jonathan we were told he used the offer of the job to bribe ribadu. To cover the alleged money laundering charges the Nagodis levelled against the wife of the president! That was the watery views that empty barrels like Nagodi sold to the masses here. Now (case don change again-as we use to say in 9ja. Ribadu is the best-the hero of the day-while Orasanya and Oti who stood against the feeble unpatriotic soul of ribadu who sold his country cheap to the foreign media, are the demons-that is Nigeria 4 u

      • NAGODI_1

        THOSE WHO STOOD AGAINST UNPATRIOTIC RIBADO WERE DRESSED DOWN BY HIM AS CORRUPT BEFORE THE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA. WHAT DID WE HEAR FROM THEM?…MUM! HE SAID THEY USED THEIR POSITION AS COMMITTEE MEMBERS TO LOBBY FOR NNPC BOARD MEMBER AND NNPC DIRECTOR OF FINANCE, THE SAME NNPC THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO INVESTIGATE, AND THEY GOT APPOINTED. WHAT WAS THEIR CORRUPTION AND UNPATRIOTIC CHARGES AGAINST RIBADO. EVERY KID IN NIGERIA KNOWS GEJ CANNOT FIGHT CORRUPTION.

        • bono

          was buhari, ibb and obj able to fight corruption name those who were jailed by ibb and obj–give us their names–fuel scam was introduced by ibb not jonathan-monkey

          • NAGODI

            WE THOUGHT GEJ IS THE SO CALLED FRESH AIR, ARE YOU SAYING WE SHOULD EXPECT HIM TO BE LIKE THOSE WE HATED AND DESPISE FOR STEALING US BLIND? TRANSFORMATION TO THE SAME AND WORST? GEJ SHOULD BE EVERYTHING ABACHA, OBJ AND IBB WERE NOT, NOW THAT YOU ARE COMPARING HIM TO THEM, WERE YOU PEOPLE LYING WHEN YOU SAID THINGS WILL CHANGE?

  • Enemona

    In all this, I take one positive thing. My friends have maintained that Ribadu will sell out, do a ‘nice job’ for this administration and get paid handsomely but I maintained my faith in him and unlike Farouk “the skunk” Lawal, he did not disappoint me.

    Kudos bruv, I liked you all over again on your FB page. I’m proud of you and I await the day people like you take the mantle of power and turn things around for us. Thanks once more and more power to your elbow. May God continue to guide you as you stand for the truth.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000463419578 Chudy Okonkwo

    There is a pattern here.Just rubbish the investigative report! Kill it!Kill it! There will be no consequences ,yes ,no consequences!but rewards!rewards! We just pretend ,we’re fighting corruption!Who gives a damn about corruption!We encourage it! Just loot! Loot! & loot! Who cares!
    Who said, there is no pattern here? Of course,there’s.
    ***SEC investigative report by lawful constituted body-House Of Rep….Ms.Oteh ,rubbished it.She killed it.Yes! She rubbished it.No consequences!She’s settled ,got her job back@ SEC.
    *** Fuel subsidy scam investigative report by lawful constituted body-House of Rep….Mr.Femi Otedola ,rubbished it.He killed it.Sure! Ote$,rubbished it.Yesooo!! No consequences.Settled with ,is it contracts?hmmm!…now owns a power company ,right? He’s still a member of President’s Economic team.Please,somebody help me here!He’s a free man walking the streets,after acknowledging of offering bribe,which is a crime in itself.
    ***hahaha!my people,I go laugh ooo! I don cry tire!Baba-OBJ say, he dey laugh too!
    $****Now comes the latest,PETROLEUM REVENUE TASKFORCEREPORT! Hahaha!!It is on the same route as others before it.Just rubbish it! Kill it! No consequences!Get your reward for the job well done!This movie is happening before our eyes now.Mr.Stephen Oronsaye and Mr. Ben Oti ,are doing that great job now.Rubbish the report! Kill the report! Get your reward!
    According to reports..Ribadu ,said that during the course of their work,Mr.Stephen Oronsaye & Ben Oti ,got jobs with the NNPC-a body that is part of the investigation.You go figure!
             Tell me if there is no pattern here.But is it a case of a government that pretends to be fighting corruption ,but has no interest in fighting corruption.You can reach,your own conclusion.Do not take my words for it.Be the judge! Goodluck  to you & me,we go survive this one too!

    Note!There is a difference between a lawful constituted body ,and members of that body.

  • Dr Pat Kolawole Awosan

    These retired looter of Nigeria commonwealths-Steve Oronsaye must have been paid some bribes to cover up corrupt senior official or minister hence he disagreed with the chairman of the commitee-Nuhu Ribadu.Oronsaye can not be trusted and at the end president jonathan knows the report has indicted petroleum minister Alison Madueke and Jonathan might just dump the report in the bin and not implement the report.Watch it!

    Dr Pat Kolawole Awosan,
    Canada.

  • http://www.facebook.com/agbeloba.bolarinwa Agbeloba Bolarinwa

    Ribadu, you are a true hero. We now know the thieves that were planted 2 checkmate ur committee..

  • igbiki

    Mr Jonathan:-
    “Let me assure Nigerians that government has no interest in HIDING ANYTHING. This report is not to INVESTIGATE ANYBODY IN GOVERNMENT. It is to look at the oil industry and tell government the best approach to MAXIMIZE OUR REVENUE BASE.,”

    The Committees Brief:-
    The Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force was constituted last February with a mandate to work with consultants and experts to determine and verify all petroleum upstream and downstream revenues, including taxes, royalties, due and payable to the Federal Government;TAKE ALL NECESSARY STEPS TO COLLECT ALL DEBTS DUE AND OWING AND OBTAIN AGREEMENTS AND ENFORCE PAYMENT TERMS BY ALL OIL INDUSTRY OPERATORS.

    The result is already known before the exam.

    Oronsanye and Oti were left after being appointed into the NNPC -which they were investigating- to rubbish the panels report and cause bad blood.

    Another wasted resources (time + sitting allowances et al.)

  • Mpitikwelu_na_Ugwu_Awusa

    It was Ribadu’s job to keep his team together and if he failed , I don’t see how any fair minded person will blame the president on it. I think this committee has been quite disrespectful in the way they conducted themselves before the president.