ADEKUNLE ADESUJI, ABUJA
Senate on Wednesday summoned Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) and Chevron Nigeria Limited, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) over $5 billion Tax fraud.
The summoning was issued by Senate Adhoc Committee on the Fraud Allegation against Chevron chaired by Senator Magus Abe after inaguration of the Committee by Senate President, Bukola Saraki represented by Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio.
Speaking at the inauguration of the Adhoc Committee, Senator Abe said the committee would not be biased in their investigation vowing to uncover truth behind the $5 billion Tax fraud allegation against Cheveron Nigeria Limited.
He added that the affected agencies like CBN, FIRS, NNPC, NAPIM are expecTed to appear before the adhoc to defend the allegation.
According to him, We are not coming to investigative hearing with any pre-judgement, the truth must be uncovered. I can you that we will be fair thorough and quick in our assignment.
Inaugurating the Committee, Senate President urged the Committee to be totally independent in their assignment and be fair to all parties concerned.
It could be recalled that Dr. George Uboh of the Panic Alert Security System (PASS) petitioned Senate over alleged $5 billion fraud at the Chevron Nigeria limited.
Uboh, according to the report, had alleged that between 2001 and 2002, Chevron evaded tax to the tune of over $343 million through over bloating of its operational costs under Petroleum Profit Tax, using Carry Agreement with NNPC as a cover when such agreement never existed with the company.
“That Chevron Nigeria Limited recouped spurious loan of $235 million from the Nigeria Federation between 2002 and 2005 for overdue cash calls; that Chevron conspired with some oil producing companies, NNPC auditors and defrauded the Federation of Nigeria by over $3.6 billion by merely manipulating accounts and records which were also done under the umbrella of Carry Agreements,” the report added.
The report stated that the representative of Chevron, Uwakwe, had denied that the oil company recouped spurious loans from the NNPC or from any other entity.
“That Chevron Nigeria Limited received notice of Assessment for Education Tax, Education Tax Gas and Gas Income tax and later made payment of $38,259,021 via Citibank on 28th August, 2006 for the three assessments,” it added.
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