Reps disagree as stakeholders shun subsidy probe

The House of Representatives, on Wednesday, condemned the critical stakeholders in the petroleum sector.

The stakeholders failed to honor their summons to an investigative hearing on subsidy payments by the Federal Government on petroleum products.

Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, who was represented by the Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Wase, decried the absence of the stakeholders.

Gbajabiamila was to declare open the inaugural investigative organized by the Special Ad Hoc Committee on Petroleum Products Subsidy Regime in Nigeria from 2017 to 2021.

He had particularly called out Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva; Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed; Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele; and the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (formerly Group Managing Director of the defunct Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation), Mele Kyari; as well as the Managing Director of Petroleum Pipeline Marketing Company, Isiaku Abdullahi, among others.

The Speaker, who was represented by the Deputy Majority Leader, Peter Akpatason, was miffed by the fact that most of the critical stakeholders were absent from the hearing while those sent to represent a few of them were officials whose cadres were lower than those required to answer questions on behalf of their organizations.

Wase disclosed that the quantum of money allegedly spent on subsidy during the period under review amounted to between N4.9tn and N6tn.

He said, “On behalf of the members of the House of Representatives, I’m expressing my displeasure by the attitude of stakeholders in the oil and gas industry that are supposed to be here. Nobody has any excuse not to be here. That shows a lack of respect for constituted authority and I think we are not going to take it.”



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