The Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has expressed displeasure over the refusal of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to comply with the 2012 oil and gas report.
According to the Executive Secretary of NEITI, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, the watchdog organization would ensure compliance with the audit report.
She explained that in the just released 2012 report, there are indications that NIMSA did not cooperate and noted that NEITI has started the process of bringing NIMASA to the table. “We have been having discussions with them and we are hopeful that that also will be resolved. What we have not done is to go up to the court process, which is provided for in the law because the general belief is that it is better to engage the agencies to understand the importance of compliance,” she said.
She spoke at a news conference with the Chair of the global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Clare Short in Abuja. Short said only the Federal Government can effectively sanction oil and gas companies indicted by NEITI for defrauding the country.
The Global EITI chair noted that government can impose sanctions through effective enforcement of the laws of Nigeria. “The sanctions are enforcement of the laws of Nigeria. To insure that all the companies pay their taxes, and those taxes are properly managed and spent for the benefit of the people. The sanctions are in the hands of the government. Of course you know that some international action is being taken against corruption,” she said.
By Pita Ochai