The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) headquarters has disassociated themselves from the illegal arrest and detention of the Chairman of Capital Oil, Dr Ifeanyi Ubah by the operative of the Directorate of Security service (DSS) and the trumped-up charge(s) that a man that used his wealth to rescue Nigerians and the economy against the oil marketers should be charged for sabotaging the same economy.
In a telephone interview by Hope For Nigeria to NNPC headquarters, the Nigerian Oil corporation confirmed that they are aware of the incarceration of Dr Ubah by the DSS, but snapped that is has nothing to do with Capital Oil's business dealings with them as the two companies are already reconciling their books, and the whole episode sounds political.
NNPC confirmed also that they have some financial liabilities to Capital Oil and their on-going reconciliation will determine who is owing who and added that the detention of Ubah will not bring any solution to the impasse and cushioned that Nigerians should not associate NNPC, and concluded that the aftermath controversy surrounding the case is the reason NNPC Management has been silent on this development.
Our NNPC sources confirmed that the DSS and other government agency were involved in the last accounts reconciliation meeting between Capital oil, an indigenous downstream petroleum firm and NNPC Retail Services, a subsidiary of the NNPC and wondered why DSS should resort to arrest of their customer, noting that the corporation has some safeguard in the event of a default. Hope For Nigeria was informed that if any of their downstream customers sells NNPC products in their custody, they have 5 days to replace them or a penalty regime will set in.
NNPC claimed that their products sold by Capital Oil in lieu of their indebtedness to Capital Oil is estimated to be about N11billion, while Capital oil has provided evidence of NNPC owing them over N15billion and non supply of products they already paid for.
In a similar phone call to Hope For Nigeria's contacts at the DSS headquarters in Abuja, Hope For Nigeria learnt that the DSS were enraged by Ifeanyi Ubah's lawyers whom they claimed went to court to restrain the Secret Police from arresting their client (Ubah) while the negotiation was going on. The DSS decision to arrest and detain Ubah and the charges including economic sabotage, left our contacts relatively speechless, as they stated emphatically that the allegations does not add up, considering Ubah his pedigree and constructive actions in the past where he rescued the country against mean-spirit oil dealers.
In a related development, the Petroleum tankers Drivers (PTD) has described the DSS's bogus charge of inciting Tanker Drivers against Dr Ubah as an unfounded lies. The PTD's Media officer, Mr Mohammed Abdulkadir said in a statement made available to Hope For Nigeria, that “The allegation is baseless, unfounded and totally untrue. Our responsibility as a trade union is solely to promote, project and protect the job security of workers mostly the tanker”.
We can recall that few days to the swearing-in of General Muhamadu Buhari as the President of Nigeria, oil Transporters and Marketers down tools because of outstanding funds owed to them by the Federal government a development that resulted in untold hardship to Nigerians.
There was extreme scarcity of petrol, diesel, aviation fuel and house hold kerosene across the country. Hospitals cannot perform surgeries, radio stations were shutting down, communication companies were affected as MTN and other telecommunications companies announced plans to shut down operation, foreign airlines were planning relocating to neighbouring countries. In some parts of the country, petrol was selling at an all-time high of N1,000 per litre, while Nigerians were sleeping in petrol stations for days waiting for a products that will never come.
Dr Ifeanyi Ubah rationalizing that the resulting chaos from this scarcity shutting down the Nation and sabotage the efforts Nigeria has made to attain greater heights, informed the striking Marketers and Transporters that “two wrong can never make a right” and added that, “We (Capital Oil) will not be part of this sabotage against our fatherland”. Therefore from this minute, we shall take the risk of opening our facilities and commence swift loading and distribution of products Nationwide”. Our facility has the capacity to load over 13 million litres (approximately 400 trucks) of product before dawn and another 57 million litres”. 70 Millions litres will conveniently earn Ifeanyi Ubah an additional profit of about N17.8billion if he has chosen to join the strike and selling to the black market.
To ease the delivery of the products across the country, Dr Ubah immediately ordered his truck park, port reception facilities and our depot complex to be opened risking the attack of the striking transporters on his multi-billionaire dollar facilities. opened. Hope For Nigeria recalled that Dr Ubah solved the traffic menace along the Oshodi Apapa expressway as he engaged the Federal and Lagos State Government and other stakeholders in the affected area, to optimally utilize his truck park facilities which has the capacity to accommodate over 1,100 trucks per time and 5,000 on a shift basis.
The DSS has detained Dr Ubah for nearly a week today and the Nigerian secret police has not convincingly prove to Nigerians and the International communities why a man who has over 10,000 Nigerians on his payroll and in various occasions stood up Nigerians against the greedy marketers. The DSS has also failed to inform Nigerians whose interest they are protecting by incarcerating Dr Ifeanyi whose company, the Capital Oil and NNPC Retail Services have been trying to reconcile the transactions. DSS was not set up to collect debts and their charges against Ubah holds are baseless. This is purely a commercial transaction between two corporate entities and any default of contractual obligations are remedied by the court not DSS.