Abuja—The police have asked an ad hoc committee of the House of Representatives to direct its queries about “missing” crude oil to the office of Abubakar Malami, the attorney-general of the federation (AGF), TheCable reports.
The lower legislative chamber had set up a panel to probe a whistleblower’s claims that 48 million barrels of Bonny Light crude were illegally sold in China in 2015.
The alleged sale reportedly led to a loss of $2.4 billion in revenue.
Appearing before the committee on Thursday, Garba Baba Umar, an Assistant Inspector-General of police (AIG) and head of Interpol, said the AGF’s office has sufficient information because it has filed cases in court on the matter.
Umar said 40 people including some foreign nationals have charges preferred against them by the AGF’s office.
“It is pertinent to state that sometime in 2015, the NPF received a petition from the attorney-general of the federation’s office to investigate the activities of some Nigerian and foreign nationals involved in blackmail and extortion of government functionaries, using forged documents to gain access to public institutions and carry out fraudulent activities,” he said.
“The investigation was concluded wherein a prima facie case of conspiracy, blackmail, and extortion of government functionaries, using forged documents to gain access to public institutions and fraud was established against them and the said charge mentioned in your letter was filed by the office of the honourable attorney-general of the federation and minister of justice.
“The suspects were arraigned for the said offences and granted bail pending the determination of the charge.
“However, it is observed that they were arraigned by the EFCC in other offences and were in detention thereby stalling the continuation in this trial for some time.
“At the resumption of trial, it is discovered that some of them have absconded into other countries while those in Nigeria are needed to appear in court for their trial, hence the invitation which they forwarded to your committee for help.”
Earlier, Mark Gbillah, chairman of the committee, lamented that Interpol invited two whistleblowers who gave information about the matter.
“We found out that your department wrote to those two individuals which is not a coincidence,” Gbillah said.
“Why did the Interpol write to them before they came to the house?”
The committee chairman said the police should cooperate with the house to ensure that the matter is properly investigated.
He also asked the clerk of the committee to write to the AGF demanding all necessary documents that will aid the investigation of the committee.