From EMEKA OKONKWO
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – NIGERIA’S Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has absolved itself from the sinking of two ships at the centre of controversy with an auctioning company.
Media reported on Monday two vessels had sunk with all their contents that could have fetched government millions in revenue. The vessels were confiscated in 2015 with over 4 000 tonnes of oil.
EFCC rejected blame saying the engagement of Pinnacle Trading and Investment Nigeria Limited, as auctioneer for the disposal of the product, which was conveyed vide a letter dated January 16, was irregular as the process leading to the company’s emergence did not satisfy the required diligence and strict procurement process.
The engagement of a consultant like in the case of Pinnacle was not solicited for, as it did not have the approval of the Acting Chairman of the Commission, EFCC stated further.
It appears the tender was also not advertised in any newspaper of the Federal Tenders journal, in clear violation of the Public Procurement Act, 2007.
EFCC said in addition, the review of the process led to a revelation that
Pinnacle as not registered with the Department of Petroleum Resources, a key requirement for the selection of such auctioneer, and consequently lacked the experience and capacity to handle the job.
“Fully conscious of the negative effect of a flawed selection process to the outcome of the process, the Commission called for a review of the selection process, a measure that consequently led to the termination of the contract.”
EFCC said its actions were transparent and always anchored on the Nigerian national interest as opposed to selfish interests.
“In regard to the matter of ‘MT GOOD SUCCESS’ and ‘MV THAMES’, the Commission will, as in all instances, be guided by the need to be transparent and accountable to all Nigerians and will not succumb to cheap blackmail in any guise whatsoever.”
– CAJ News
From EMEKA OKONKWO