Lagos-based Human rights lawyer Mr. Femi Falana (SAN) has called on the National Assembly to stop the “illicit” audit of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and order the Auditor-General of the Federation to carry out a comprehensive audit of the Federation Account.
Falana said this in reaction to the revelation by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, had appointed Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) to audit NNPC, noting that the appointment was unconstitutional.
In a statement issued Sunday, Falana said: “As all the probes carried out by the National Assembly since 1999 have failed to check the impunity of the NNPC, the Senate should stop the investigation it has ordered into the missing oil money ($49.8 billion).
“Similarly, the Petroleum Minister should stop the illegal audit of the NNPC ordered by her. In the circumstance, the Auditor-General of the Federation should be directed by both chambers of the National Assembly to audit the Federation Account and submit his report to them within one month.
“This demand is in consonance with Section 85(4) of the Constitution which states that ‘The Auditor-General shall have power to conduct periodic checks of all government statutory corporations, commissions, authorities, agencies, including all persons and bodies established by an Act of the National Assembly’.”
Speaking further, Falana noted that the revelation from the letter written by the Governor of the CBN, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, on the unremitted $49.8 billion into the Federation Account and NNPC’s reaction to the allegation shows the need for someone to provide clarity as both CBN and NNPC gave conflicting accounts.
Falana said the Jonathan administration owes Nigerians a duty to provide clarity on the conflicting figures issued by both parties.