FG Accuses Ribadu Of Leaking Oil Revenue Probe Panel Report…Says He Wants To Be FCT Minister.
The federal government has accused former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu of leaking the report of the Presidential Task Force on Petroleum Revenue he was recently appointed to head even as some members of the committee have disowned the leaked report, saying they were yet to conclude work on the report .
A top source in the presidency said government’s investigations had already revealed that Ribadu was the one behind the recent leakage of the unfinished report to an international news agency, Reuters before being reported by the local media. A member of the committee actually accused Ribadu of using what he called “cheap popularity tactics” he engaged as chairman of EFCC.
“We had to caution him at a point when he caused EFCC operatives to arrest some people who were still under investigations”, the member added. A presidency official said Ribadu went for the leakage as a “revenge against the Jonathan government after all efforts to get the president remove the minister of the FCT, Senator Bala Mohammed and appoint him in his place failed.” The source added that” as we speak, Bala Mohammed does not talk to Ribadu again over this matter when he discovered that he was lobbying the president to be appointed to occupy the FCT portfolio once occupied by his friend, El-rufai.”
Another member of the committee, Chief Anthony George Ikoli SAN in his response to the leakage said: “the committee’s assignment is factually yet to be definitively concluded; consequently a final report which would be the culmination of the processes and procedures agreed and adopted by the committee cannot exist, especially not in the format being circulated by the media both social and print.”
He further said that: “the report writing subcommittee has not, after our last meeting in June received, reviewed, revised and submitted a preliminary report for the committee of the whole for further consideration. The necessary levels and procedures to identify figures, facts and information as well as mandatory authentication and cross checking to ensure information data integrity and credibility cannot be said to have been done or carried out.
“At the last meeting of the committee, a written proposal presented to the committee members was advised to be subjected to the established integral norms and procedures of civilized conduct in a setting such as ours.Many members of the committee are just as shocked and annoyed as I am that such painstaking work being conducted by the committee could be so ridiculed by the unsubstantiated reporting of such a respected global news agency. People of unimpeachable character populate this committee; the manner in which this news story was procured only serves to question the integrity of these people, which is rather unfortunate;
“I personally believe the distraction generated by this story is unnecessary as it would neither aid the attainment of the anti-corruption agenda of government or the terms of reference of the committee”
Another member of the committee who prefers to be anonymous said that what members agreed upon at their meeting in June was to send copies of the findings of the task force to persons and institutions concerned for their clarifications and general comment. One of such persons was the Minister of Petroleum, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke.
She said both the minister and others so concerned were yet to send their response to the Task Force. “What we agreed upon was to make the response of such people a part of our final report in order to present an objective report to the government. I believe it irresponsible for whoever has done this. It would not help the country in its anti- corruption drive.”
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