By Kingsley Omonobi
ABUJA—The committee set up by President Goodluck Jonathan to re-investigate oil marketers, who fraudulently collected over N422 billion in subsidy payments, will submit its report today.
This came even as Vanguard gathered that many more oil marketing concerns have been indicted in the subsidy fraud in the re-investigation and the amount has surpassed N422 billion.
Vanguard gathered that the Aigboje Aig-Imokhuede-led committee has also recommended that the prosecution of the culprits in the scam should be handled directly by the Federal Government rather than going through the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to avoid duplication.
Among recommendations said to have been made by the 15-man presidential committee was for some of the indicted companies to refund large sums of money, while others should be prosecuted to serve as a deterrence.
Recall that Vanguard reported last week that many more mind-boggling fraudulent discoveries were unearthed when the new committee commenced its work of re-investigating many of the oil marketers, who earlier complained to President Jonathan that their indictment was wrong.
The Imokuede Committee also discovered that all the marketers of fuel were guilty of collecting money without importing the products, even though they were all cleared by the embattled Farouk Lawan’s fuel subsidy probe panel.
It was gathered that the Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede’s committee, which initial report was faulted by some of the oil marketers prompting President Jonathan to establish another one, has stumbled on new findings that had thrown up more subsidy payments that may make the initial amount of N422 billion paid without verification, look like a child’s play.
The initial Aig-Imoukuede-led panel had uncovered fraudulent over-payments to many of the oil marketers to the tune of N422 billion, while all the oil marketers involved and indicted were invited and interrogated by the Farouk Lawan Committee but were given a clean bill of health.
Police sources had told Vanguard that the decision of the oil marketers to give out huge bribes to the House committee was to enable them use the clean bill given by the House to counter the indictment report that would be presented by the Finance Committee panel.
The marketers were said to have settled for the Farouk committee because the Aig-Imoukhuede panel had bluntly told them they were not interested in taking bribes to influence their findings, which would be submitted as it was discovered.