The Senate on Wednesday threatened to sack and jail the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Mele Kyari and other top executive officers of petroleum subsidiaries.
The Senate specifically threatened to sack the executive officers whose agencies were involved in the Turn Around Maitenance (TAM) projects of refineries.
The Senate noted that from 2010 till date, over N12 trillion has been spent on TAM. The Senate also said that it has records of over $592 million, €4.8 million and £3.4 million spent between 2010 till date on TAM, yet none of the refineries is working.
The Chairman of the Senate Ad-hoc Committee investigating the various Turn Around Maintenance (TAM) projects of Refineries, Senator Isah Jibrin, made the threats following the failure of Kyari and other chief executive officers of its subsidiaries to attend an interactive session by the panel.
Some of the agencies invited whose chief executive officers failed to turn up at the session but sent representatives include the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL); Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA); Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) and others.
Senator Jibrin (APC – Kogi East), noted that so much has been heard on the TAM of refineries and so much have been spent on operational materials on the refineries that are not working.
He said that the Senate wanted to find solutions to all the leakages, as there are a lot of them.
“We will ask for refund and dismissal of all the chief executives involved in the Turn Around Maintenance,” he declared.
Jibrin said that for weeks, they have been asking for documents, which have not been given by the oil companies, a development that created suspicion.
“We sent them invitation more than two weeks ago requesting for documents and the documents have not been released after two weeks. So, we want the chief executives to be present.
“More worrisome is between 2010 and 2020, the sum of N4.8 trillion was said to have been spent as operational expenses.
“How do you incurr operational expenses that have to do with purchase of raw materials and similar expenses on factories that are moribund? How do we come about operational expenses? We need to know.
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“These are issues that Nigerians want to know; they want solutions to all these leakages. We know they are leakages. Whether you accept it or not they are leakages and they are all forms of compromise within your various establishments.
“We know and we will not hesitate to escalate it to the highest possible level, including possibility of refund and outright dismissal of some of the heads of some of these agencies and possibly go to jail,” he said.
Senator Yahaya Abdullahi said that NNPCL and management of other agencies, who came to represent their bosses, should be sent back to tell their Chief Executives that they should appear in person rather than send representatives.
Senator Sumaila Kawu said that they know the modus operandi of the Civil Service, adding, “We are not in the Senate for personal functions. We are representing the entire legislators. You in the civil service, we know how you are operating.
“We are in a very serious business. At the end, you will be at the receiving end. Nigerians are not satisfied with what you are doing and you will be at the receiving end.
“We are independent. We can go to any length to defend our people. It is the constitution that established you. So, we must agree how to operate.
“We will suspend this interaction until when you are ready. We have 100 ways through which we can achieve our legislative work. We just wanted to give you fair hearing and you must respect the constitution.”
Senator Danjuma Goje, who asked them whether they are the heads of the agencies, added that the panel will only deal with heads or Chief Executives and not people who have been sent.
“We will have to agree on new dates for the submission of the documents both hard copies and soft copies and a date for meeting where the Chief Executive must appear,” he said.
They were, however, given till Tuesday to submit the documents before the meeting with the Chief Executive.
By Sanni Onogu
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