The founder of the O’dua People’s Congress, Dr. Fredrick Fasehun; a former Niger Delta militant leader, Mujahid Dokubo-Asari; and four other security contractors awarded a three-month pipeline surveillance contract by the Goodluck Jonathan led Federal Government, have given the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) a 14-day ultimatum to complete their settlement or face litigation.
The contractors under the aegis of the NNPC Pipeline Security and Surveillance Service Providers, in a joint statement issued on Monday, said the contract which ran for three months, between March 15, 2015 and June 15, 2015, was a dully signed contract which the NNPC must abide to, stressing that failure of the corporation to settle the indebtedness by the end of August would result in a lawsuit.
The firms that secured the lucrative security deal includes: New Age Nigeria Limited (Fasehun), Donyx Global Concept Ltd. (Gani Adams), and Gallery Security Services Ltd. (Bibo Pere Ajube). Others are Bajeros Nigeria Ltd. (Joshua Machiever), Close Body Protection Ltd., ATEF Nigeria Ltd. (Asari-Dokubo), and Izon Ibe Security Ltd.
“We would like to use this opportunity to set the records straight for the good of the public. It should be known that the contractors had valid and duly signed contract agreements with the management of the NNPC to protect the pipelines for a period of three months. Up untill now, the public perception of the NNPC Pipeline Security and Surveillance job was that former President Goodluck Jonathan gave the job to the contractors on the altar of politics,” the contractors said in a joint statement.
According to the statement, the contract was signed by the contractors and the management of the NNPC as a way of finding lasting solutions to the incessant problem of pipeline vandalism across the country.
“The terms and agreements of the contract were formulated and drafted by the management of the NNPC and was duly signed by all the parties, including the contractors and the legal department of the NNPC after several meetings and consultations.
The statement read further: “It is our belief that the contract agreement between the NNPC and the contractors is a public document and therefore can always be accessed by any member of public. At the same time, what we are demanding from the NNPC is for it to redeem its own part of the contract agreement and should not be seen as a favour and handout to any individual.
“By this, we have resolved that by the end of this month (August), if the NNPC fails to redeem its contractual obligation and refuse to pay us, we would be left with no choice but to take them to court, an action which we think may not do the credibility of the government any good because it is a case based on contractual agreement that was legally signed by a parastatal of government.
They denied the speculation that the contract was terminated by federal government, stressing that “the contract indeed ran its course, which was a period of three months, starting from March 15, 2015 and ended on June 15, 2015.”
By Olisemeka Obeche