The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has urged President Bola Tinubu to initiate an investigation into the alleged disappearance of $15 billion and N200 billion in oil revenues.
In a statement, SERAP’s deputy director, Kolawole Oluwadare, called for the establishment of a presidential panel to promptly examine these allegations, as documented by the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) between 2020 and 2021.
The group emphasized the importance of accountability, prosecution of suspected wrongdoers, and the recovery of any misappropriated funds to restore public trust and prevent further strain on the country’s finances.
Failure to act could result in legal action by SERAP
Oluwadare urged the President to “name and shame anyone suspected to be responsible for the missing and unaccounted for public funds and to ensure their effective prosecution as well as the full recovery of any proceeds of crime.
“There is a legitimate public interest in ensuring justice and accountability for these serious allegations. Taking these important measures would end the impunity of perpetrators,” the statement read.
“As President and Minister of Petroleum Resources, your office ought to be concerned about these damning revelations, by getting to the bottom of the allegations and ensuring that suspected perpetrators are promptly brought to justice, and any missing public funds fully recovered.
“Any failure to investigate these grave allegations, bring suspected perpetrators to justice and recover any missing public funds would have serious resource allocation and exacerbate the country’s debt burden.
“It would also create cynicism, suspicion, and eventually citizens’ distrust about the ability of your government to combat high-level official corruption, as well as deter foreign investment and limit growth and development.
“We would therefore be grateful if the recommended measures are taken within seven days of this letter’s receipt and/or publication. If we have not heard from you by then, SERAP shall consider appropriate legal actions to compel your government to comply with our request in the public interest.
“The findings by NEITI suggest a grave violation of the public trust and the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution 1999 [as amended], national anticorruption laws, and the country’s obligations under the UN Convention against Corruption.”
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