Tuesday 7 May 2013

Aviation firm takes DPR to EFCC over unpaid helicopters

Aviation Nigeria

An aviation services firm, Obike Systems Consults Limited, has petitioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), as well as the National Assembly Committee on Upstream sector of the oil and gas industry to investigate the refusal of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to release funds to contractors engaged to wet lease three helicopters for the offshore monitoring of oil terminals.

The firm said since 2010 when it secured approval for the contract to supply three helicopters for the offshore monitoring of oil terminals to be managed by the the DPR, it was yet to be paid for the job it had carried out, despite budgetary release of funds to the DPR.

Addressing reporters in Lagos at the weekend, the chief executive officer of Obike System Consults Limited, Navy Captain Jerry Ogbona (retd), said he had to petition relevant anti-graft agencies and the National Assembly to draw attention to the act of the DPR.

Ogbonna said since 2010, when over N2.17 billion had been allegedly budgeted for the three helicopters, the DPR was yet to release substantial amount to several contractors handling several segments of the project.

He explained that for the past three years officials of the DPR have been frustrating efforts to release money for the firm to complete the job of bringing in three helicopters, for which he secured a bank guarantee as advance payment for the lease.

He said :" In 2012, we got two helicopters from a Tunisian firm to facilitate the project. It was an eleven seater helicopter to enable us move material and men offshore for the job, yet the DPR will not pay us.

The important thing here is that in 2010 government budgeted N1.19bn for this project, in 2011 government budgeted N489m and in 2012 government budgeted N300m.

The  important thing is that government has been making all these monies available all these years, a total of N2.17bn has been budgeted for this project and has been made available through the ministry of finance but the DPR had always said that the money has been mopped up.


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