In line with the statement issued by Federal Government that it would investigate and prosecute organizations and individuals that benefitted from the oil subsidy payments in a fraudulent manner, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has begun taking steps to fulfill the pledge.
Yesterday, the offices of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) received a visit from EFCC agents who carted away cache of documents from the Oil parastatal. The agents also visited the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and meted out the same treatment to file cabinets, relieving them of their precious contents.
EFCC spokesman Uwujaren confirmed the development and stated that it was the beginning of the subsidy investigation.
The aim of the investigation is to determine the marketers, who have benefitted illegally from the fuel subsidy via practices such as over-invoicing, smuggling, false declarations of cargo and other shady practices.
The Federal Government recently removed the fuel subsidies when the cost of maintaining them became unsustainable. It is suspected that it is the activities of such unscrupulous marketers that propelled the bill for subsidies to alarming heights causing government to yank totally, before finally reducing the benefit.
However many Nigerians are of the opinion that the government, even at the highest levels were involved in the corruption in the industry, and do not expect much to yield forth from the current investigations in the sector.
[Source: Business Day]