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Probe $2.1bn, N3.1tn subsidy fraud, SERAP tells Tinubu

Probe $2.1bn, N3.1tn subsidy fraud, SERAP tells Tinubu

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project has urged President Bola Tinubu to probe the $2.1bn and N3.1tn subsidy payments allegedly missing and unaccounted for between 2016 and 2019.

SERAP made the call in a statement on Sunday by its Deputy Director, Kolawole Oluwadare.

SERAP urged Tinubu to “set up a presidential panel of enquiry to promptly probe the grim allegations that $2.1bn and N3.1tn public funds of oil revenues and budgeted as fuel subsidy payments are missing and unaccounted between 2016 and 2019, as documented by the Auditor-General of the Federation.”

The organisation told the President to “name and shame anyone suspected to be responsible for the alleged widespread and systemic corruption in the use of oil revenues and the management of public funds budgeted as fuel subsidy, and to ensure their effective prosecution as well as the full recovery of any proceeds of crime.”

It also urged the President “to promptly, thoroughly, independently, transparently and effectively probe all fuel subsidies paid by successive governments since the return of democracy in 1999, and to use any recovered proceeds of crime as palliatives to address the impact of any subsidy removal on poor Nigerians.”

Oluwadare, had in a letter dated June 3, 2023, said, “There is a legitimate public interest in ensuring justice and accountability for these serious allegations. There will be no economic growth or sustainability without accountability for these human rights crimes.”

The organisation urged Tinubu to urgently act to follow due process of law in any policy to remove fuel subsidy, ensure that suspected perpetrators of these crimes against Nigerians are brought to justice and full recovery of any missing public funds.

It added that “Arbitrarily removing fuel subsidy without addressing outstanding accountability issues in the alleged mismanagement of oil revenues and fuel subsidy payments would amount to further impoverishing the poor while letting high-profile officials and non-state actors get away with their crimes.”

SERAP threatened that should the President ignore its demand to order a probe within three days, it would resort to a lawsuit.serap

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