President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday accused past governments of encouraging corruption in the oil sector.
Buhari said he was disappointed at the way Nigeria’s oil industry had been handled since he left office as a former petroleum minister and as a military Head of State in 1985.
Buhari was quoted in a statement by the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, Buhari as making this observation during a meeting he had with a delegation of the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
The president specifically heaped the blame on governments for the current situation in which Nigeria is forced to spend billions of naira annually on subsidies for petroleum products.
He said he was sure that there would not have been any need for the huge subsidies currently being paid to importers if the development of the country’s domestic refining capacity and petroleum products distribution network had kept pace with national demand.
“They (past administrations) allowed the infrastructure to collapse so that their cronies can steal by bringing in refined products from overseas,” Shehu quoted the President as saying.
He therefore urged the chairman and members of the RMAFC, who availed him of their view on petroleum subsidy payments, to come up with more humane proposals to rescue ordinary Nigerians from what he described as the “wicked manipulation” of the country’s oil industry by corrupt operators.
The President said that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the Nigerian Ports Authority and other MDAs, which previously relied on the laws establishing them to retain all or part of the revenues collected by them, did so illegally and must now comply with the Nigerian Constitution by paying all revenues into the Federation Account.
Buhari was also said to have flayed the RMAFC for approving what he called “excessive remunerations” for some political office holders.
Source: Daily Post