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NNPC Controversy: Between CBN and Ministry of Finance

Source: pointblanknews.com

 By Olusola Daniel
I have followed, with keen interest, the controversy surrounding the

unaccounted federation account funds involving the Central Bank of Nigeria

(CBN) and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). It will be

recalled that the CBN Governor, Mallam Lamido Sanusi caused a stir when he

raised an alarm in a letter to President Goodluck Jonathan that the NNPC

failed to remit crude oil proceeds amounting to $49.8 billion into the

Federation Account from January 2012 to July 2013.

However, when he was summoned before the Senate Committee on Finance in

December to give insight into the letter he wrote on the controversial

missing money, Sanusi recanted saying $12 billion, and not $49.8billion,

was the amount discovered not to have been remitted to the account within

the period. That was after a joint reconciliation committee, of which he

was part, had resolved the figure to $10.8 billion. Now, the CBN

Governor's position has changed again. This time, he has put the figure at

$20billion.
Between the vociferous rebuttals of the NNPC and the disturbing

inconsistencies of the CBN, we find reassurance in the matured and

empirical approach with which the Minister of Finance and Coordinating

Minister of the Economy (CME), Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has handled the

matter. Apart from having dealt with the issue at meetings of the

Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) long before the CBN

Governor even raised the matter, it was the painstaking work of the

Finance Ministry that reconciled the initial $49.8 billion mentioned by

the CBN as unaccounted funds to the $10.8 billion which was accepted by

all parties as the basis for further discussion.
Since the CBN and NNPC have continued to be at loggerheads, with the one

insisting on $20 billion as funds yet to be accounted for, and the other

vigorously asserting that it has accounted for virtually all the funds,

aunty Ngozi has graciously recommended that the best way to get to the

truth and reassure Nigerians who have been expressing strong opinions on

the issue would be to set up an independent body that would do a forensic

audit of all the documents and claims.
Evidently, this should provide Nigerians with a definitive verdict on the

controversy. We would recall that a similar forensic audit was deployed to

investigate subsidy claims and this produced good results and a better

tighter process against fraud. With this firm stance on fairness,

transparency and accountability maintained by the Finance Minister, we can

rest assured that the reconciliation process will be completed with

honesty and integrity, devoid of undue encumbrance from partisan

interests.
Olusola Daniel is a political observer and advocate for community

development. He writes from Lagos, Nigeria and tweets from @OlusDaniel.

 
I have followed, with keen interest, the controversy surrounding the

unaccounted federation account funds involving the Central Bank of Nigeria

(CBN) and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). It will be

recalled that the CBN Governor, Mallam Lamido Sanusi caused a stir when he

raised an alarm in a letter to President Goodluck Jonathan that the NNPC

failed to remit crude oil proceeds amounting to $49.8 billion into the

Federation Account from January 2012 to July 2013.

However, when he was summoned before the Senate Committee on Finance in

December to give insight into the letter he wrote on the controversial

missing money, Sanusi recanted saying $12 billion, and not $49.8billion,

was the amount discovered not to have been remitted to the account within

the period. That was after a joint reconciliation committee, of which he

was part, had resolved the figure to $10.8 billion. Now, the CBN

Governor's position has changed again. This time, he has put the figure at

$20billion.
Between the vociferous rebuttals of the NNPC and the disturbing

inconsistencies of the CBN, we find reassurance in the matured and

empirical approach with which the Minister of Finance and Coordinating

Minister of the Economy (CME), Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has handled the

matter. Apart from having dealt with the issue at meetings of the

Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) long before the CBN

Governor even raised the matter, it was the painstaking work of the

Finance Ministry that reconciled the initial $49.8 billion mentioned by

the CBN as unaccounted funds to the $10.8 billion which was accepted by

all parties as the basis for further discussion.
Since the CBN and NNPC have continued to be at loggerheads, with the one

insisting on $20 billion as funds yet to be accounted for, and the other

vigorously asserting that it has accounted for virtually all the funds,

aunty Ngozi has graciously recommended that the best way to get to the

truth and reassure Nigerians who have been expressing strong opinions on

the issue would be to set up an independent body that would do a forensic

audit of all the documents and claims.
Evidently, this should provide Nigerians with a definitive verdict on the

controversy. We would recall that a similar forensic audit was deployed to

investigate subsidy claims and this produced good results and a better

tighter process against fraud. With this firm stance on fairness,

transparency and accountability maintained by the Finance Minister, we can

rest assured that the reconciliation process will be completed with

honesty and integrity, devoid of undue encumbrance from partisan

interests.
Olusola Daniel is a political observer and advocate for community

development. He writes from Lagos, Nigeria and tweets from @OlusDaniel.