Senate panel on PTDF recommends sanction for Obasanjo & Atiku
The 12-point recommendations of the Committee:
* The Committee recommends that in the case of deposits that were placed in Trans International Bank (TIB) and Equatorial Trust Bank (ETB), the circumstantial coincidence that existed between the deposits and the loans could not be used to link PTDF money with the companies that were granted loans. If there are any irregularities, it is the responsibility of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to sanction the bank.
l a) In respect of the approvals of $125 million on 25th April, 2003 and the subsequent placements of $115 million in Equatorial Trust Bank (ETB) and $10 million in Trans International Bank (TIB), the Committee is satisfied that due process was followed. The subsequent investment was within the contemplation of section 1 (c) of the PTDF Act and section 23 of the Finance (Management and Control) Act.
b) However, in the case of the additional $20 million for which the then Executive Secretary, Hamisu Abubakar misrepresented the facts and wrongfully obtained approval of the Vice President, the Committee recommends that EFCC which is presently investigating the matter should continue and prosecute him for any offense disclosed.
* Hussaini Jalo, a former Executive Secretary of the PTDF from July 2005 to November, 2005 is under investigation by EFCC and the sum of N49 million and 6 nos vehicles have so far been recovered from him. The Committee recommends that EFCC which is presently investigating the matter should continue and prosecute him for any offence disclosed.
* With regards to the approval which the Vice President gave in respect of the $20 million on 14th October, 2003, without the authority of Mr. President, the Committee views the approval of the Vice President as illegal and therefore recommends that the Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar be referred to the Code of Conduct Bureau for further action.
* In respect of some projects commenced by PTDF in 2006 viz: Incorporation of Galaxy Backbone; ll. Purchase of Computers for Civil Servants under the Computer for all Nigerians Initiative; iii. Defence Industry Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) Rehabilitation, for which Mr. President gave approval and later got them ratified retroactively, the Committee views the action of the President, C-in-C, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, as illegal and therefore refers Mr. President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, to the Code of Conduct Bureau for further action.
* In respect of the progress report on Obasanjo Administration and photographs for State House Library, for which the former Executive Secretary approved N4.5 million, the Committee views the project as outside the mandate of the PTDF Act. The Committee recommends that the Executive Secretary, Alhaji Adamu Maina Waziri be referred to the Independent Corrupt Practices (ICPC) for further action.
* The Committee sustains recommendation No. viii of the Ad-Hoc Committee that all projects approved for the PTDF from 2003 till date be verified and evaluated by the relevant Committees of the Senate, that is: a) Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream) and b) Committee on Public Accounts; or alternatively c) Ad-Hoc Committee for this purpose.
* The Committee
sustains recommendation No. xii of the Ad-Hoc Committee that all accounts in the name of PTDF within and outside Nigeria should be established by the Senate Committees on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Public Accounts; or alternatively an Ad-Hoc Committee for this purpose.
* The Committee sustains recommendation No. xv of the Ad-Hoc Committee that the Agencies like the Central Bank of Nigeria, Ministry of Finance, Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, Department of Petroleum Resources and the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation that have direct bearing with the Fund should play their roles as expected to aid the Fund in meeting the objectives for which it was established.
* The maintenance of four different accounts by the Accountant-General of the Federation with the CBN in the name of PTDF, namely: Reserve Account, Inspectorate Account, Bank Operations Account and Independent Revenue Account pursuant to the approval of the letter initiated by the then Special Adviser to Mr. President on Petroleum and Energy Engr. Funsho Kupolokun (see appendix...) for which approval was given by Mr. President putting a restriction on PTDF funding, the Committee states that the approval was illegal and a contravention of Section 1 of the PIDF Act. In this regard both :Mr. President and Engr. Funsho Kupolokun are culpable.
The Committee, therefore, recommends that a strict compliance with Section 1 of the PTDF Act should be enforced.
* The Committee recommends that all accounts opened in contravention of section 1(c) of the PTDF Act should be closed forthwith.
* That the Petroleum Technology Development Fund Act should be amended to accommodate the current realities in the oil and gas industry as well as the Solid Mineral sector. Also attached to the report were correspondences from the President and the Vice-President where they indicted one another over misuse of PTDF funds.
FULL REPORT AVAILABLE: