The All Progressives Congress (APC) says nothing but total recovery of the nation’s funds looted by public officials will be acceptable to Nigerians.
The party, in a statement issued in Lagos yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, described the level of looting as “massive, spinechilling and mind-boggling’’. “Allowing those who privatised the commonwealth to get away is offering a thumbs-up for looting.
No responsible government will do that,’’ APC said. It, therefore, thanked Nigerians for their support for the Buhari Administration in its “tough but important” task of tracing and recovering the loots, while also ensuring that the looters face justice.
The party said that the government needed every kobo of the funds it could muster to bring about the change it had promised Nigerians. It said that leaving such “hairraising funds’’ in the hands of the few looters was dangerous, because they could use the funds to destabilise any government.
“In fact, no one will be surprised if the looters use their dirty funds to sponsor public demonstrations against the government’s determination to recover the funds,’’ it said.
Giving an insight into some of the activities that happened in the last few years, the APC said that N3.8 trillion out of the N8.1 trillion earned from crude oil (2012- 2015) was withheld by NNPC. It said 2.1 billion US dollars from Excess Crude Account was unaccounted for, and also cited the Department of Petroleum Resources’ unmerited N109.7 billion royalty from oil firms.
The party, among other things, said that 160 million barrels of crude worth 13.9 billion US dollars was lost between 2009 and 2012. It said that the 15 million US dollars from a botched arms deal had yet to be returned to Nigeria.
The party said the listed ‘missing’ funds constituted just a tip of the iceberg since they were mostly from a few sectors of the economy, mostly the oil sector. It said that what went on in other sectors was better imagined, urging all Nigerians to rally around the Buhari Administration to recover the funds and bring looters to justice.
According to the party, anyone who attempts, either by deeds or words, to sabotage the recovery efforts is not a patriot.
The APC said that the government should be supported to put in place measures to prevent looting of public funds in the future.
-Dyepkazah Shibayan, Abuja