The National Assembly has been fortified by security agents over an impending protest by a group against the probe on the N10 billion allegedly spent by the Minister of Petroleum, Diezani Allison-Madueke. on chartered jets.
The protest is planned for this morning, in spite of the fact that both chambers of the National Assembly are on Easter break.
various entrances entrances into the National Assembly have been fortified as at evening yesterday to mitigate against the planned protest against the investigation by the House Committee on Public Accounts.
A text message by one ‘Ariyo’, to selected journalists reads “I greet you brother. Kindly grant us your humble coverage for a protest on the probe of the oil minister tomorrow (April 17), starting at NASS, then Villa and NNPC. Thanks for your support. From a Coalition of Concerned CSOs on the probe. We appreciate your usual support.”
The Solomon Olamilekan-Adeola led Committee is scheduled to begin the probe on 28th April 2014.
$300,000 (or N50 million) was allegedly spent by Alison- Madueke on a trip that should have cost about N7.5 million.
Another trip dated December 21st, 2012 from the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja to Mastson Airport, United Kingdom with the Global Express XRS with the tail number: OE-LGX gulped N57.5 million against N6 million that is should have cost ordinarily.
The lawmakers have written the Minister inviting her over the issue.
Sequel to a motion of urgent national importance brought before the House by a member, Hon. Samuel Adejare, the committee has expressed the determination of the House to investigate the chartered private jets issue.
It has therefore directed the Minister to explain “all she knew about the transactions, whether or not as a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria she is entitled to such chartered private jets for private use, whether or not she has not breach public service rules, who is responsible for the bills” and other necessary information that would assist the Committee in getting to the root of the matter to the committee within one week.
Also invited NNPC Group Managing Director, Andrew Yakubu, and top officials of Federal Aviation Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) as well as managing directors of Evergreen Aviation Terminal and VistaJet International, operators of the private jets through separate letters dated 26th March 2014.
The Committee has obtained additional documents including flight schedules on foreign trips by the Minister between 2012 and 2013 using the Global Express XRS—TAIL No: S5-GMG and Tail No: OE-LGX, OE-LSS and OE-INA.
On Wednesday, 9th April protesters who claimed that some of the probes by the National Assembly were meant to stunt the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) into law.