The Chairman, Senate Committee on Local Content, Senator Solomon Olamilekan Adeola, on Tuesday revealed that he was offered a vessel as bribe to kill investigations on allegations of irregularities against TOTAL Nigeria and the National Petroleum Investment Services Limited.
The senator made this known during the investigative hearing on the allegations of irregularities against Total Nigeria and NAPIMS.
According to Adeola: “I was offered a vessel as bribe to kill the matter.”
Adeola therefore ordered Total Nigeria and National Petroleum Investment Management Services to resume bidding to include local vessel contractors left out in initial tendering opportunity that was canceled.
It was gathered that the Senate was petitioned by the Indigenous Vessel Contractors, accusing Total Nigeria and NAPIMS of excluding their members from the process after four years to pave the way for other bigger local vessel operators, where TOTAL Nigeria and NAPIMS allegedly have vested interest.
It was alleged in the petition that a director in TOTAL Nigeria, who wants to corner the contract, had gone ahead to register a vessel.
Earlier before Adeola gave an order to resume bidding, Total had informed the committee that it canceled the original contract because local contractors it (TOTAL Nigeria) was interested in could not make the list.
The committee members, who were infuriated by the response of Total Nigeria, frowned at the alleged irregularities, which they believe violate extant laws in the oil and gas sector as well as the procurement laws.
However, the Executive Director, Corporate Services of TOTAL Nigeria, Abiodun Afolabi, denied any wrongdoing, claiming that his company has not in any way violated the law in the handling of the tender initiated since 2012.
Afolabi said there was a need to change strategy because of the long gestation period it takes for contracts in the oil sector to be completed.
Rather than pacify the lawmakers, the explanation angered them the more, especially when TOTAL Nigeria had earlier certified the Indigenous Vessel Contractors as technically and commercially qualified for the contracts.
The Director General of NAPIMS, Roland Evbere, who is relatively new on the job, appealed for six months to nine months to sanitize the process, including eliminating “portfolio local contractors in the business value chain”.
The Senate resolved in the spirit of fairness that Total Nigeria should strongly consider the local vessel contractors it believed were unjustly left out to be accommodated in the next round of bidding.
Olisa Agbakoba Drags AGF To Court Over CJN’s Trial
Constitutional lawyer and former President of Nigerian Bar Association, Chief Olisa Agbakoba, SAN, has dragged the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN, to court over moves to arraign the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen, over his alleged non-declaration of assets.
In the suit he lodged before the Federal High Court in Abuja, Agbakoba, through his lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, maintained that the six-count charge pending against the CJN at the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, in Abuja, is illegal, unlawful, wrongful, unconstitutional, null and void.
He is praying the court to determine, “Whether having regard to the decision of the Court of Appeal in NgajiwaV FRN (2017) LPELR-43391 (CA) , the combined provisions of sections 6, 153,158,287(2), and 292(1) and Paragraph 21(b) of the 3rd Schedule to the 1999 Constitution, as altered and extant provisions of the Code of Conduct for Judicial Officers, the present charge in Charge No:CCT/ABJ/01/19 against the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, does not amounr to flagrant and violent disregard of the provisions of the Constitution, due process of law, and, therefore, unconstitutional, null, void and of no effect whatsoever.
“Whether the 1st and 2nd defendants can competently file and maintain charges against Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, before the 3rd defendant, the Code of Conduct Tribunal, or indeed any court or tribunal without prior recourse to the 4th defendant, the National Judicial Council, in accordance with constitutional provisions.
“Whether the 1st and 2nd defendants can maintain charges against Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, in Charge No:CCT/ABJ/01/19 before the 3rd Defendant, the Code of Conduct Tribunal, or indeed any Court or Tribunal without affording him adequate time and facilities for preparation of his defence.”
Upon determination of the legal questions, Agbakoba, prayed the court to among other things, declare that “the purported steps taken by the 1st and 2nd Defendants to arraign Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, before the 3rd Defendant, the Code of Conduct Tribunal, on the basis of Charge No:CCT/ABJ/01/19 filed therein, without prior recourse to the 4th Defendant, the National Judicial Council, is illegal, unlawful, wrongful, unconstitutional, null and void.
“A declaration that the purported or proposed arraignment, of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, before the Code of Conduct Tribunal, the 3rd Defendant, on Monday 14th January, 2019, or on any other date whatsoever, on the basis Charge No:CCT/ABJ/01/19 filed therein, without first having prior recourse to the 4th Defendant, the National Judicial Council, is illegal, unlawful, wrongful, unconstitutional, null and void
“A declaration that the purported or proposed arraignment, of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, before the Code of Conduct Tribunal, the 3rd Defendant, on Monday 14th January, 2019, or on any other date whatsoever, without first being afforded sufficient time and facilities for preparation of his defence, is unconstitutional, null and void, being a gross violation of the provisions of Section 36 (6) (b) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
“A declaration that Charge No:CCT/ABJ/01/19, filed against the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, by the 1stand 2nd Defendants, before the Code of Conduct Tribunal, the 3rd Defendant, without first having prior recourse to the 4th Defendant, the National Judicial Council, is illegal, unlawful, wrongful, unconstitutional, null and void.
“An order of this Honourable Court, quashing and/or setting aside, in their entirety, all the charges preferred by the 1st and 2nd Defendants, against Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, before the 3rd Defendant, the Code of Conduct Tribunal, in Charge No:CCT/ABJ/01/19 and nullifying all steps taken by the 2nd and 3rd Defendants, leading to the said illegal and unconstitutional arraignment or proposed arraignment of Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, CJN before the 3rd Defendant.
Likewise, “An order of injunction by this Honourable Court, restraining the 1st and 2nd Defendants, whether by themselves, servants,privies or officers working under them, from maintaining the charges or taking any further steps towards maintenance and prosecution of any charges, against the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, before the 3rd Defendant or any other Court or Tribunal, without first having recourse to the 4th Defendant”.
Aside from the AGF, other defendants in the suit are the Code of Conduct Bureau, the CCT and the National Judicial Council.
MC Oluomo Discharged From Lagos Hospital, Travels Abroad
A chieftain of National Union of Road Transport Workers, Musiliu Akinsanya, a.k.a MC Oluomo, was on Tuesday night discharged from a Lagos hospital, where he was receiving treatment.
MC Oluomo was attacked at an All Progressives Congress rally in Ikeja on January 8, and was immediately taken to Eko Hospital, following injuries he sustained.
A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria, who visited the Eko Hospital in Ikeja on Wednesday, gathered that MC Oluomo left the hospital on Tuesday night after payment of over N2 million medical bill.
A very reliable source, who preferred anonymity, told NAN that the NURTW leader may have left for the United States immediately he was discharged from hospital on Tuesday night.
The source said: “He is very fine and has nothing to worry about his health after his treatment at the hospital. Before he finally left on Tuesday night, he was receiving a lot of well-wishers.
“Sometimes, he moves around and sometimes walks his visitors to the corridor, so he was in a sound health before leaving the hospital.
“Few days before he left the hospital, his associates were making arrangements for his trip.”
NAN also observed that there was no more police presence around the hospital, as the three police vehicles stationed there had been removed.
The Lagos State Police Command had said it arrested some suspects and also declared wanted another NURTW chieftain over the disruption of the APC rally in Lagos.
The Command’s spokesperson, CSP Chike Oti, had said that those arrested in connection with the incident were helping the police in their investigation.
Fake News: EFCC To Detain Odumakin, Fani-Kayode For At Least 14 Days
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has vowed to detain a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, and the spokesman of Afenifere, Yinka Odumakin, for allegedly spreading fake news on the invasion of the residence of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, by the anti-graft agency.
This was disclosed on Wednesday by the spokesman of the EFCC, Tony Orilade, in Abuja.
Although Fani-Kayode has apologized for the dissemination of the fake news , the agency is expecting him and Odumakin to appear in its office or get arrested.
Orilade said: “They are expected to be in our office this evening to interrogate them on the source of the news and if they fail to talk, the agency will secure an order to detain them for 14 days.”
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