By Obas Esiedesa
The new Executive Secretary, Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, NEITI, Dr Orji Ogbonnaya Orji, has revealed that statutory recoverable revenues amounting to N69.51 billion and $5.31 billion were still outstanding from oil and gas companies.
Dr Orji, who disclosed this during his maiden session with journalists on Tuesday in Abuja said the amounts were contained in the findings of the 2018 Audit report of the petroleum sector.
He said the amounts do not include findings and outstanding revenues from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, which are being dealt with by a joint committee.
While Dr Orji did not name the entities involved in the outstanding amounts, checks on NEITI 2018 audit report showed Addax Petroleum, Aiteo, Chevron, Conoil, Mobil, Nigerian Agip, Seplat, and Shell Petroleum Development Company, among 65 oil and gas companies with financial liabilities to the Federation Account.
Dr Orji explained that under his leadership, NEITI would work to ensure that these outstanding revenues are recovered from the companies.
According to him, “These recoverable revenues consist of payments on oil royalty, gas royalty, gas flare penalties, petroleum profit tax, company income tax, education tax, withholding tax, value-added tax and NDDC levy.
“We are no longer comfortable just releasing reports. Our emphasis will be on these and other recoverable revenues due to government while ensuring that companies are treated fairly and given the opportunity to grow.
“NEITI will unveil a framework that will involve stakeholders in this process. Joint committees between NEITI and respective covered entities will be established to look at the issues as it affects individual agencies.
“The committee committees will be similar to the one established between NEITI and NNPC and is without prejudice to the revitalization of the Inter Ministerial Taskforce Team on remediation as a multi-sectoral approach” he stated.
He stated that NEITI would have a deeper engagement with companies to gain exposure into their peculiar business models and operations.
“The approach will create opportunities for NEITI to appreciate their locations,peculiar nature of their operations and workflow. The essence is to build trust, knowledge sharing and technical capability”, he added.