The House Representatives investigation into the alleged irregularities and corruption in the acquisition of the OVH Energy Marketing by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) was stalled yesterday.
This was sequel to absence of the NNPCL group chief executive officer, Mele Kyari and that of Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), Farouk Ahmed at the investigative hearing of the House ad-hoc committee conducting the probe.
The NNPCL had in 2021 announced the outright acquisition of OVH Energy and the affiliate, Apapa SPM to strengthen its downstream business portfolio, enhance profitability and guarantee national energy security.
Chairman of the ad-hoc committee, Hon. Hassan Abubakar Nalaraba said the panel was mandated to investigate the irregularities and alleged corruption in the Nigeria Energy security provided by the NNPC Limited and the acquisition of OVH Energy Marketing.
“The House resolved to set up this ad hoc committee to investigate the circumstances surrounding the acquisition of OVH Energy by NNPCL and report within four weeks.
“Unfortunately, we are far behind schedule despite the extension of the House recess, we still feel the need to continue or to progress with this investigation,” he stated.
However, the main actors, Kyari and Ahmed, were represented by their subordinates who could not provide satisfactory responses, according to the parliament standard.
The Committee’s chairman insisted that: “We are actually expecting the CEOs of NNPC Limited and the NNPPPRA in this public hearing. But unfortunately both of them are unavoidably absent.
“So, I don’t think, or do you have what it takes to speak for them in this public hearing? Can you provide us with the appropriate information we required today? If you can, then we can proceed with the public hearing.
“Because we need a representative that can speak on their behalf. Are you ready to speak on their behalf? Are you ready to answer on their behalf? Does your representation here amount to their personal views, if you’re being called upon to make a presentation out of oath? Can you do that? Can you take that for them?”
But the representatives of CEOs answered in the negative.
Speaking, Hon. Mariam Onuoha, who sponsored the motion admitted that the representatives of the CEOs can not speak for the entities before the committee and moved for adjournment.
She said: “I believe with your statement that you are not able to speak on behalf…and having made that statement clearly, I will want to move a motion that the committee will not be able to go on with this public hearing.
“And I move that this session be adjourned pending when we have your submission to a later date when either you or the GCEO would make himself available to address the Committee.
“And if you may, it’s advisable to you submit your documents ahead of time so that the committee would have it to study either before he comes or whoever will make appearances for him.”