House set to probe Malabu payment scam

House set to probe Malabu payment scam

The House of Representatives is to commence investigations into the alleged round tripping of proceeds in the sale of the contentious OPL 247 in favour of Malabu Oil and Gas Limited.

The House said on Thursday that its aim was to determine those who were responsible for shortchanging Nigeria in the deal that has threatened to engulf the Presidency.
The Federal Government, Agip Oil and Shell Petroleum Development Company have been fingered in the transaction involving a $1.1 billion payment to Malabu.

An ad-hoc committee is due to be constituted to immediately investigate all aspects of the transaction and submit a report to the House within three weeks.

The House took the decision following a motion by Hon. Robinson Uwak (Akwa Ibom/PDP), who alerted the House of the negative publicity generated both locally and abroad by the transaction, and its damning consequences for the country’s long-term image and credibility.

Uwak said that there was good ground for investigation into the alleged indignity, in order to determine if there have been violations of local codes of conduct and anti-corruption laws in the course of the transaction.

“There was a purported sale of OPL 245 to Shell/Agip consortium for the sum of $1,092,000,000, and the immediate transfer of the entire amount to Malabu Oil and Gas Limited, an indigenous oil company, as compensation for its alleged prior interest in the oil bloc,” he said. “From available reports, the ethical and legal issues surrounding the transaction have further been compounded by the pattern of distribution of the proceeds of this sale.”

Reports alleged that Malabu oil wired over $500 million to various accounts linked to top government officials immediately it received the $1.1 billion for its stake in OPL 245.