By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA—House of Representatives, yesterday, at plenary, resolved to summon Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, to explain the renewed payment of oil subsidy to marketers without securing the approval of the National Assembly, in line with the constitution.
Also invited for the same reason are Group Managing Director, GMD, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Maikanti Baru, and Executive Secretary, Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPPRA, Abdulkadir Saidu Umar.
The three officials are to appear before the House Committees on Finance and Petroleum Downstream at a date to be announced soon. They would also be accounting for the monies expended on the subsidy payment since January 2017 in the current Petroleum Pricing Regime.
Their invitation followed the consideration and adoption of a motion, entitled, “Urgent Need to Investigate Fuel Subsidy Payment by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation,” moved by Sunday Karimi (Kogi State).
Recalling that the Federal Government had since jettisoned subsidy, Karimi in his motion, argued that the Federal Government and the NNPC by-passed the constitution and the National Assembly and took a unilateral decision in the payment.
To this end, the lawmaker said the action of the corporation was both illegal and unconstitutional.
He said: “The House notes that December 2017, the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, and Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ibe Kachiku, have admitted that the current landing cost of petrol is N171 per litre despite the fact that the Federal Government has pegged official rate at N145 per liter.
“At the moment, it is the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation that’s paying for cost or deferential of N26 per litre despite the fact that the federal executive has posited that it has removed petroleum subsidy in the 2017 Appropriation Act.”