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The Chief Whip of the Senate, Ali Ndume, has commended President Bola Tinubu’s recent directive to the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) to transfer revenue from crude oil sales to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The Senator representing Borno South in the red chamber, said this in a chat with journalists in Abuja, on Tuesday.
The President under the new arrangement, directed the NNPC to submit receipts for crude oil sales to CBN for vetting and documentation.
Receipts of payment for the oil sales are to be forwarded to the apex bank with immediate effect.
The NNPC over the years had maintained sole control over crude oil sales, only rendering accounts to the federal government.
Ndume appealed to Tinubu to extend the initiative to all government agencies that generate revenues.
Some of them he listed included, the Nigeria Customs Service, the Nigeria Ports Limited, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, among others.
Ndume, said the agencies must not be allowed to keep government funds in commercial banks without proper monitoring, as such would be safer in the coffers of the CBN.
He said, “The President has now ordered that all crude oil sales money should be paid into the CBN. That is a very welcome and positive thing that he has done and he should not stop there.
“All agencies of government that are revenue generating should pay their money into the consolidated revenue account.
“As they present their budget, whatever expenditure they are going to incur, let them bring it before the National Assembly. That’s what the constitution says. So, what they now want is to make a political issue again out of it.
“This decision that Mr. President took is the right decision, it is constitutional and it should be supported by everybody.
“That way, it should also apply to other agencies of government that are driving revenue. They cannot keep it. NIMASA should pay directly like NNPCL into the CRF.
“The Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) should do the same. The Nigeria Customs Service and all other revenue agencies should pay revenues into the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation and their accounts should remain with CBN because they can do banking.”
Speaking further, he said: “If they want to withdraw money, they should withdraw through the CBN. They were doing this before. Don’t go and keep people’s money in commercial banks and do transactions with it. That is it.
“I reiterate my call commending him for asking NNPCL to pay all oil revenue into the Consolidated Revenue account.”
The Senator reiterated his appeal to Tinubu to proclaim an Executive Order on Unexplained Wealth.
He said such a law would empower anti-graft agencies to go after Nigerians with questionable riches.
The Senator representing Borno South in the red chamber said if Tinubu was determined to tackle the menace of corruption, he must proclaim the Executive Order as soon as possible.
He said people, especially the political class, must explain their sources of wealth or forfeit the same to the government.
He added, “The next thing now, if President Tinubu wants to fight corruption, would be to sign an Executive Order on Unexplained Wealth in this country.
“Let all these people explain where they got their money, including myself. People should stop talking about trivialities or personal issues; they should talk about national issues.”(www.naija247news.com)