Firm sues Reps, EFCC over fuel subsidy report

Firm sues Reps, EFCC over fuel subsidy report

An oil marketing firm, Integrated Oil and Gas Limited, has instituted a suit before a Federal High Court in Abuja, asking the court to invalidate the report of the Farouk Lawan-led fuel subsidy management committee.

The respondents in the suit are the House of Representatives, the Attorney General of the Federation, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission and the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Mohammed Abubakar.

The firm’s prayer seeking the invalidation of the report was on the grounds that no issue of impropriety was levelled or raised against it when its managing director appeared before the committee.

The plaintiff therefore seeks the court to declare that “the resolution of the House approving the report of the committee that it should refund N13.2bn” is not sustainable.

It added that throughout the proceedings, neither any impression nor indication was given that there was any discrepancy in its transactions.

In the suit, counsel for the plaintiff, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo, argues that, “The report is contrary to the rules of natural justice and section 36 of the Constitution and therefore illegal, null and void.”

The plaintiff is seeking the court to declare that the defendants in the suit are not entitled in law to act or take any step on the account of the report by the House and committee.

It also wants the court to restrain the defendants and their agents from taking any action or step against it and its officers based on the report.

Meanwhile, some Civil society organisations under the aegis of “End impunity Now” on Saturday, said they would embark on another nationwide mass action to push for the full implementation of the fuel subsidy report by the House of Representatives, notwithstanding the scandals involved.

The group is made up of the Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice, United Action for Democracy and other Non-Governmental Organisations.

The Executive Director of ANEEJ, Mr. David Ugolor, who addressed a joint press briefing with the CSOs in Abuja, argued that the revelations in the report confirmed the views of Nigerians about the massive corruption in the oil sector.

He said, “We call on Nigerians concerned by the state of our nation and aggrieved by the scale of corruption and impact on our lives to come out enmasse on this day all over Nigeria, to begin the first in a series of steps aimed at taking back our country.”

The group maintained that the outcome of the report which called for the prosecution of indicted persons and companies involved in the fuel subsidy scam should not be muddled up with the cash-for-clearance bribery allegation leveled against Lawan and other members of the committee.

The Convener of UAD, Mr. Jaye Gaskia, observed that the Jonathan administration would be judged by the importance it attached to the calls for full implementation of the fuel probe report.

The Chairman of the Joint Action Front, Abuja Chapter, Mr. Ezenwa Nwagwu, said if the President could afford to sack the Minister of Defense and National Security Adviser on issues bordering on insecurity, “We therefore want the President to do the same to those who assist in the looting of the nation’s treasury; we want them sacked so that we can breathe fresh air as well.”

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