Chevron Nigeria ordered to refund $ 492 mm in tax money

Aug 09, 2006 02:00 AM

The House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources has ordered US oil major Chevron Nigeria to refund to the Federal Government $ 492 mm, being money it (Chevron) failed to pay as part of its tax obligations.
The House order to Chevron was given by Chairman of the Petroleum Resources committee, Honourable Cairo Ojougboh, while submitting the report of the committee to the House. Ojougboh said after a thorough investigation of allegations of tax evasion against the oil company by an indigenous company, ABZ Integrated Services, Chevron was found culpable of the allegations against it.

The report would still be debated and adopted by the House before its recommendations could come into effect. According to the report, Chevron was found guilty of the allegations of inflating its tax returns to the government and not paying its tax obligations when due.
The ABZ Integrated Services had petitioned the committee over alleged tax evasion by the oil company over a period of time necessitating the House to mandate its committee on petroleum resources to investigate the allegations. But a spokesman of the oil company told that since it had not received a copy of the report, it was not ready to react to the allegations.

According to Ojuogboh's report, "Chevron Nigeria and its associated companies should pay the additional tax liability of $ 492 mm within 21 days from this date".
The committee further recommended that the 10 % of the amount to be recovered from Chevron should be paid to ABZ Integrated, the consultant engaged by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to work on the project as commission. It further recommended that "a letter of commendation be sent to ABZ Integrated Services for its high intellect, professionalism, tenacity and absolute dedication to service".

Other recommendations by the committee are as follows: "In view of the interest the matter has generated both nationally and internationally and considering that this is not a normal revenue generation process, the Committee recommends that Chevron deliver drafts for the $ 492 mm to the Committee for onward transmission to the appropriate government agency and the consultant viz: FGN -- $ 442.8 mm; ABZ Integrated Services -- $ 49.2 mm, representing 90 % and 10 % respectively.”
"That appropriate steps be taken to determine whether or not any other multinational oil producing company is involved in any activities that short-changes the government of accruable revenue.”

"That the role and activities of FIRS, CBN, NAPIMS, DPR be further x-rayed with a view to eliminating the defects in their operational procedures, capable of encouraging corruption and fraud in the area of granting RAB, Performance Balance, Payment of Cash Call and accounting for government revenue.”
"That EFCC and Chevron should apologize to ABZ Integrated Services especially its Managing Consultant for the defamatory statements that maligned the company and its operatives as the Committee has established that those statements were unwarranted".

Meanwhile, the Petroleum Products Marketing Company Limited (PPMC) stated that it has begun repair of vandalised pipelines in its Enugu depot. The vandalised pipeline at the Enugu depot has stalled the movement of products therefore threatening supply of petroleum products to Enugu, Ebonyi, Anambra, Benue and Kogi States in the past five months.
A Director with the PPMC, Engr. Banji Olowofela who disclosed the company's plan to restore vandalised pipelines in Enugu explained that the repair will involve a total overhaul of the depot for effective result.

Source: This Day
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