Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, has acknowledged the request by human rights lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) for the details of the loss of about $60bn oil revenue due to Nigeria — although he offered no hint whether he would acceded to Falana's request or not.
Ina letter dated April 10, 2019 and received by Kachikwu's office a day after, Falana had made the request on the strength of the Freedom of Information(FOI)
“In my letter addressed to you in your capacity as the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), I called your attention to the refusal of the regulatory agencies in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources to enforce the Production Sharing Contracts signed with the International Oil Companies by the Federal government," Falana had written.
“In a public statement credited to you sometime in August 2017, you did disclose to the media that Nigeria had lost not less than $60 Billion due to the refusal of some public officials to implement the terms of the Production Sharing Contracts between the Federal Government and the International Oil Companies.
“In another public statement made on January 19, 2019 by the Acting Chairman of the Revenue, Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission, Mr. Shetima Bana confirmed the loss of oil revenue of $60 billion arising from the non-implementation of the said production sharing contracts.
“In view of the foregoing, I am compelled to request you to furnish me with information on the revenue of $60 billion which the Federal government has refused to collect from the International Oil Companies as at August 2017. As this request is made pursuant to section the provision of the Freedom of Information Act,, you are required to supply the requested information not later than 7 days from the date of the receipt of this letter.
“TAKE NOTICE that if you fail or refuse to accede to my request, I shall be compelled to apply to the Federal High Court to direct you to avail me with the information on the loss of the oil revenue of $60 billion.”
However, responding in an April 11, 2019 reply, Kachikwu, through his Chief of Staff, Ms. Oge Modie, just acknowledged Falana’s letter. He he did not supply the requested information or promise to do so in future.
The curt letter, with reference number MPR/COS/042/VOL.1/795, and signed by Modie, reads: “On behalf of the Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kackikwu, this is to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated April 10, 2019 and received on April 11, 2019 on the above subject matter.
"Please accept the assurances of the Honourable Minister’s best regards.”