Court orders EFCC to investigate Yanaty Petrochemical for alleged N1.8bn subsidy fraud

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The Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal, on Monday ordered Yanaty Petrochemical Limited, an oil marketing company, to submit itself for investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFFC, over an alleged N1.8billion petroleum subsidy fraud.

The EFCC had dragged the defendant before the appellate court to set aside the judgment of Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, Abuja, that all investigations into the alleged petroleum subsidy fraud against the defendant had been concluded.

Delivering the unanimous ruling, Justice E. J. Ekanem said Justice Ademola’s judgment was an undue interference with the statutory power of the EFCC, which basic function, among others, is to investigate economic and financial crimes.

Mr. Ekanem further held that the EFCC had a measure of discretion “to determine whether an investigation should continue, has been concluded or be re-opened”.

Yanaty’s Managing Director, Elias Adeojo, was given approval by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPRA to import 30,000 tons of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, under the Petroleum Support Scheme in the first quarter of 2011.

The defendant claimed he imported 31,256.992 metric tons equivalent to 42,171,630 million litres in March, 2011 via MT Beaver.

Yanaty purportedly discharged the product at Lister Oil Jetty, Lagos, which is managed by Oando Marketing Plc.

As a result, Yanaty allegedly received the sum of N2,731,942, 103.73 as subsidy for purportedly discharging 42,773,279 million litres of PMS.

However, during investigation, Oando, operator of Lister oil jetty, disclosed that MT Beaver discharged only 10, 187.353 metric tons, which is equivalent to 13, 952.926 million litres) of PMS for Yanaty, as opposed to 31, 256.992 it claimed to have discharged.

Yanaty, therefore, allegedly received the sum of N1.8billion as unearned subsidy from the federal government.

Counsel to the defendant, Michael Anache, had filed a case against the PPRA and its executive secretary before Justice A. R. Muhammed of the Federal High Court, Abuja, seeking a declaration that all investigations against them by law enforcement agencies had been concluded.

Though the EFCC was not joined in the suit before Justice Muhammed, judgment was given in favour of Yanaty.

Also, in an effort to prevent further investigation into its activities, Yanaty, thereafter, filed another case against the EFCC before Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, Abuja, seeking an interpretation of the judgment delivered by Justice Muhammed.

It urged Justice Ademola to rely on the earlier judgment delivered by Justice Muhammed declaring that all investigations against it ( Yanaty) had been concluded.

However, while moving his plea at the last sitting, counsel to EFCC, Sylvanus Tahir, told the court that EFCC was not joined in the first suit before Justice Muhammed.

“The ruling today is a vindication of our appeal against the judgment of the lower court, which made an order restraining EFCC from further investigation and interrogation of Yanaty and its officials on the grounds that investigation against the company had been concluded.

“We insisted that investigation was ongoing because the case is clear. EFCC started investigation against Yanaty in February, 2012. But while it was subsisting, they surreptitiously filed a case against the PPRA and its former executive secretary, without joining EFCC.

“The core issue in that case was whether the Advance Payment Guarantee, APG, issued by Sterling Bank Plc in favour of PPRA still subsisted or had expired. It has nothing to do with the fact that they had been investigated or that the issue had been concluded.

“Two agencies of government are primarily charged with this investigation: EFCC and the Special Fraud Unit. Yes, the House of Representatives Adhoc Committee on Petroleum (downstream) as well as the Aig- Imokhoude-led Committee did some fact-finding investigations. But, at the end of their investigations, they turned in their reports to EFCC for further investigation and that was what EFCC was on before they went to court.

“The essence of this judgment is that we possess the power and discretion to investigate cases. It has started, but not yet concluded. Also, no security agency has issued any certificate of clearance that, Yanaty is not culpable,” Mr. Tahir said in reaction to the ruling.


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  • Dazmillion

    Justice E. J. Ekanem should have also directed the EFCC to investigate Justice Ademola as well

    • Burbank

      Ademola needs no further investigation.
      The N25m bribery case against Ademola and the previous NJC hearings against him (in the case of the Director of Pension Accounts in the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation Dr. Sani Teidi Shaibu) should be prosecuted to their logical conclusion – that the rotten and totally corrupt criminal judge Adeniyi Ademola be sacked and jailed, NOW.

  • Mockme

    For me, in the case of investigating an allegation for corruption, the Supreme court or CJN or whoever it is the duty, should state that no court injunction should be entertained. Let everyone fingered be subjected to investigation in a reasonable and humane manner. If the person is free he should be thus proclaimed by the courts. If not, he should face the wrath of the law. It should no be a right of any Nigerian, especially, these political office holders and contractors to be free from investigation on corruption charges. I doubt if there is any Nigerian top civil servant or political office holder and government contractors that is not guilty of any case labelled against them.

  • Burbank

    The NJC must recommend the immediate dismissal of Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, Abuja. Ademola personifies the corruption of the Nigerian justice system.

    VP Osinbajo must cleaned the federal high court of filth like Ademola, just like Ghana cleaned her judiciary from rotten justices.

    The war against corruption will be in vain if dishonest, morally rotten and ethically disabled criminals like Adeniyi Ademola
    is allowed to roam free on the streets or judging from the bench.

    • Concerned9ja

      ….like Ademola like the never-to-be forgotten Marcel Awokulehin.

      • Burbank

        Yes, that criminal Marcel Awokulehin too.
        A judge that can quashed 170 proven charges against the notious Ibori can only propagate corruptions in the courts, like Ademola and A R Muhammed.

    • emmanuel

      Shhhhh, Justice Ademola is an APC hatchet man! Go ask Olanipekun

      • Burbank

        Irrelevant – APC or PDP, British, Russian or Nigerian.
        Buhari did not look at one’s party membership when he whipped asses.
        Asked Saraki and Nyako.

  • Hassan Lawal

    …..this Justice Adeniyi Ademola’s name is always appearing in anything illegal,any wrongly delivered verdicts and any anti-people,pro-thief verdicts,one can only wonder what kind of children will come out of these kind of fathers.God help us!

  • bikky

    No wonder Adeojo did not do anything as a job since he left army in 60s or 70s up to this time, he has been stealing our common wealth since and share within his family, anyway time is coming when all the secret will be opened as for justice Adeniyi Ademola IJC should look into record of this non challant judge and he needs to be checked once and for all,he has made nonsense of himself in so many occasions and this has potend danger for our youths that’s see some of these elders as a mouth piece of judiciary system.