NITEL'S PREFERRED BIDDER 'READY FOR PROBE'
The preferred bidder for the Nigeria Telecommunications Limited, New Generation Telecommunications Limited, has said it is ready for the any probe that the Federal Government may want to institute in order to establish its interest in the national carrier and funding sources.
Spokesman of the group, Mr. Usman Gumi, who spoke on the telephone to our correspondent in Abuja on Sunday disclosed that the New Generation group had already offered the audited accounts and certificate of incorporation of its financier, the Minerva Group, to the Federal Government for examination.
Nigerian Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, Mr. Bashir Yuguda, had recently alleged that the Minerva Group of UAE could be a money-laundering vehicle or fraudulent group that wants to deceive and cheat its Nigerian partners with promise to raise funds that it has no power to.
Dismissing the allegation as baseless, Gumi said it was inconceivable that huge funds in excess of $1bn could be laundered through world class banks through which the payment was expected to be made to the Federal Government.
The Minerva Group is listed in the New Generation Consortium as the financier of the transaction while Chinese firm, China Unicom (Europe) Limited, was listed as technical partner. Gi.Cell Wireless Nigeria Limited, managed by Gumi is the consortium's coordinator in Nigeria.
In a letter addressed to Minister of State for Foreign Affairs on March 1, Nigeria's Ambassador to UAE, Yuguda, raised the alarm that the Minerva Group could be a fraudulent company with no access to $2.5bn or a money laundering vehicle.