Controversy is still trailing the Hon. Farouk Lawan-chaired House of Representatives Ad-Hoc Committee Report on fuel subsidy, as no fewer than 17 oil companies have faulted their indictment by the report. The oil firms have also threatened to file N100billion suit against the committee. According to the lead lawyer to the firms, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), who spoke with newsmen on the phone yester night, the firms will “sue and claim over N100billion damages. Most of these oil firms were never invited by the House Ad Hoc Committee but they were indicted. I will lead the team, the oil firms have reached out to me. In as much as I am against corruption and that those who mismanaged the oil sector should be dealt with, I also believe there must be fairness and justice.
“I am also a lawyer; I owe an obligation to the legal profession to ensure justice. Even God gave Adam and Eve fair hearing in the Garden of Eden. These companies were neither invited nor interacted with in any manner.”
The companies are Mobil Oil Nigeria (N14.934b); Somerset Energy Services (N3.015b); AX Energy Limited (N1.471b); CAH Resources Association Limited(N1.052b); Crust Energy Limited(N1.192b); Fresh Synergy Oil Limited(N1.417b); Ibafon Oil Limited(N4.687b); Techno Oil(N1.036 b);Oil Bath(N1.019bn);Mut-Hass Petroleum Limited (N1.2bn); Stonebridge Oil Limited(N1.784b); Petrotrade(N1.471b); Lucky Energy(N1.7); Rocky Energy(N1.620b); Lottoj Oil(N1.427b); Oakfield Synergy Network Limited(N988m); Prudent Energy and Services Limited(N1.360b); Nepal Oil and Gas Service(N2.353b).
But sources close to the affected companies confirmed that the oil companies have rejected the report, describing it as lacking fair hearing. The companies insisted that besides the fact that they were not invited to appear before the committee, they were shocked to discover that the committee went ahead to indict them without hearing from them. For instance, the affected companies are claiming that the House Ad-Hoc committee did not extend formal invitation to them to appear before it, contrary to what its counterpart committee of the Senate had done.