The Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, NEITI, has called on the Federal Government to immediately recover the over $21 billion withheld by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, and its upstream arm, the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company, NPDC, and use it to fund the recovery of the economy.
NEITI said the NNPC and the NPDC, have failed to remit $21.778 billion and N316.074 billion respectively to the Federation Account.
In a policy brief released on Tuesday, NEITI explained that it came up with the $21.778 billion and N316.074 billion unremitted amounts after a series of audits of the oil and gas sector it carried out.
It said the unremitted amounts were due from three main sources: federation assets divested to NPDC and NPDC’s legacy liabilities; payments for domestic crude allocation to NNPC; and dividends from investment in Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Company,NLNG, paid to but withheld by NNPC.
“Even in the best of times, $21bn + N316bn is not small money,” Executive Secretary of NEITI, Waziri Adio, said at the launch of the report in Abuja, adding that “the country is in a dark place. We need to recover all the money we can get.”