By Tordue Salem, Abuja
The House of Representatives has set up an enquiry into alleged irregularities in the oil Terminal Contract sum of N1. 8billion.
Chairman, House Committee on Public Accounts, Rep. Woke Oke disclosed this during the investigative hearing into the execution of over N1.8 billion oil terminal standardized celibacy and measurement contract.
Oke who said the inquest was provoked by petitions from stakeholders in the industry, expressed the resolve of the Committee to ensure transparency in the entire process of payments for Oil Services companies in the country.
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He further observed that while it was legitimate for service providers in whatever sector to be paid their fees, he frowned at back-door and unappropriated payments.
Rep. Oke maintained that payments made by Federal Ministry of Finance in conjunction with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), should be above board and in line with financial regulations.
Speaking earlier, Chief Executive Officer of Berge International Services, Mr. Basil Lot, explained that the company executed a standardized celibacy and measurement contract on particular oil terminals to ensure that the correct quantity of crude approved is what is taken out.
Mr. Lot disclosed that for the highly technical service provided the country between 2015 and 2017, the company received payment of N1,775,591,251, leaving a shortfall of N39 million from the total amount invoiced for the services.
He also explained that the payment was made from fees paid by importers of Nigeria’s crude oil into her escrow account without appropriation by the National Assembly.
While ruling, Rep. Oke, disclosed that the Committee will invite other service providers with the view to ascertain the extent of transparency in the payment of international contracts and if the same trend is established, those responsible would be brought to book.