President Jonathan announced today that his administration would release the Forensic Audit of the National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), one day after President-Elect Buhari declared that his administration would investigate claims by Muhammad Sanusi, the former Central Bank Governor, that 20 billion dollars is unaccounted.

Jonathan’s team has refused to release the report published by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) since it was released by them last year. SaharaReporters has repeatedly requested access to the audit from the Jonathan administration, but have been denied.

SaharaReporters has extensively reported on the government’s attempts to suppress the contents of the PwC report. President Jonathan and the Auditor General for the Federation, Samuel Ukura, have both claimed that the unaccounted sum is around 1.4 billion dollars.

SaharaReporters will publish details on this story as they are made available. See statement below:

STATE HOUSE PRESS STATEMENT

PRESIDENT JONATHAN ORDERS IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF REPORT OF FORENSIC AUDIT OF NNPC ACCOUNTS, DISMISSES ALLEGATION OF LAST MINUTE LOOTING, RUSHED PRIVATISATION AND HURRIED RECRUITMENT INTO FEDERAL PUBLIC SERVICE

We have noted with concern, the allegation by the spokesman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Alhaji Lai Mohammed that officials of the Federal Government are engaged in “last minute looting of the nation’s resources, rushed privatization of key institutions and hurried recruitment into the public service”. 

We also consider as most unfortunate and uncharitable, the suggestion by Alhaji Mohammed that the Jonathan Administration is trying to “tie the hands” of the incoming government merely by continuing to discharge its constitutional responsibilities until the end of its tenure.

The Jonathan Administration which continues to do its best to ensure a smooth and peaceful handover over of power to the President-Elect, General Muhammadu Buhari, deeply regrets the unfairness and combative frame of mind reflected in Alhaji Mohammed’s statement. 

President Jonathan has done his best in the past five years to discharge his constitutional responsibilities for good governance and effective leadership of the nation. 

Without any prejudice whatsoever to the freedom of the incoming administration to do as it pleases, within the confines of extant laws when it assumes office, the Jonathan Administration will continue to discharge its responsibility to govern until May 29, 2015.

In continuing to fulfil the obligations of his office however, President Jonathan has not, and will never condone any form of unscrupulous conduct on the part of state officials. 

President Jonathan will also never authorise any attempt to create any problems for the incoming administration as the APC spokesperson, who ought to know that the outcome of the March 28 presidential elections does not imply a cessation of governance, unjustly alleges. 

As Alhaji Mohammed threatened in his statement, the incoming administration will be perfectly within its rights to review all actions of the present government as it may deem fit.

We see nothing wrong with that. After all, the present Administration reviewed the actions of previous governments on assumption of office with resultant benefits for policy and project implementation.

President Jonathan is also deeply concerned by the continuing suggestions that his administration still has anything to hide about the unproven allegation that about $20 Billion is unaccounted for by the NNPC during his tenure.

To lay the matter to rest, President Jonathan in line with Section 7(2) of the NNPC Act, has directed that the full report of the PWC Forensic Audit of the NNPC accounts be released immediately to the public so that all Nigerians will be properly informed on the matter.

 

Reuben Abati

Special Adviser to the President

(Media & Publicity)

April 27, 2015

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