The Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ahmed Makarfi, has said the Senate Committee on Finance led by him did not investigate the former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke in 2015.
According to Punch, Makarfi told journalists in Kaduna that the responsibility of the committee was to the financial records of the NNPC.
He said, “We did not investigate her (Diezani). We investigated the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the proceeds of sale of crude that NNPC was supposed to have remitted to the federation account and for the period of either 15 or 16 months.
“Our report made it clear that there were several aspects under her ministry that we did not look into because we were not mandated to do that like the issue of swaps, strategic alliances, sale of oil blocks, investments and other issues.
“Still, within the area we investigated, our report was clear that over N1bn was not accounted for even though some agencies such as NPDC accepted that some hundreds of millions (naira) were in their accounts waiting for reconciliation before they could be remitted.
“We were asked to follow up when the senate approved that report, so we wrote series of letters to confirm whether the remittances had been done, but maybe because we were leaving office, our letters were ignored.
“The report is there. We never cleared anybody. We were not asked to investigate her as a person but NNPC as an institution. They owned up to everything, only that they could not account for everything and our report showed that.”
On the issue of a former governor, James Ibori, Makarfi said since he had served his sentence, he is free to join any political party and participate in politics.
He said, “The law prevents him from holding public office for some time and if we apply the law, we should not deny him his constitutional right to participate in politics.
“Participating in politics does not mean occupying public office. Why are prisoners allowed to vote? It is because they have the constitutional right. So an ex-convict has the right to participate in anything the law allows.”
On the issue of corruption, Makarfi said the PDP would be able to give proper assessment of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2019 after its exit from power.
He said, “By 2019, when we take over, we are not going to be vindictive but the truth will prevail.”