An ad hoc committee investigating “illegal sales” of crude oil by officials of the defunct Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has commenced hearing into the missing oil.
The committee, headed by Mark Gbillah commenced the investigation on Tuesday with an appearance by the Code of Conduct Bureau.
It would be recalled that the green chamber had resolved to embark on the investigation following a motion moved by Isiaka Ibrahim.
Ibrahim had alleged in his motion that the officials of the NNPC had sold 48 million barrels of oil in China but failed to remit the money into the federation account.
The speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, in his opening remarks, said the committee has the mandate to investigate the missing crude oil and total oil export from 2014 till date.
Gbajabiamila, who was represented by Ibrahim, said the committee must help to unveil the true situation of things.
“It was quite alarming to learn about whistleblower allegations that over $2.4 billion in possible revenue by the country was lost from the sale of 48 million barrels of Nigeria’s crude oil cargoes in China,” he said.
In his closing remarks, the Chairman of the Committee, Gbillah said the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami and oil companies were invited to the hearing, however, they did not appear.
He warned that all invited officials must honour the invitation or the committee may trigger its power of arrest warrant.
“It’s unfortunate that the minister of finance is not here, the Attorney General of the Federation is not here” he said.