LOOTING: How Obasanjo, Yar’Adua, Jonathan Squandered Over N70 trillion In 15 years

Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, NEITI, Mr. Waziri Adio, yesterday revealed how former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo, late Umaru Yar’Adua and Goodluck Jonathan allegedly squandered over N70 trillion in 15 years.

Adio, who disclosed this to the Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-Governmental Affairs during an oversight visit to his office, noted that the over N70 trillion represented earnings from sale of crude oil and gas between 1999 and 2014.

According to the NEITI boss, unless Nigeria develops a prudent way of spending, the country may be in for very rough times in the coming years. Adio said it was unfortunate and unthinkable that despite the huge earnings recorded from crude oil sales over the years, Nigeria was unable to account for at least $100 billion in the excess crude account.

He, therefore, called on the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government to develop a saving mechanism that would accommodate a drastic slash on government spending to the barest minimum, if his administration must succeed.

Adio  said: “Let me inform the committee that we discovered that between 1999 and 2014, the country spent over N70 trillion it received from oil and gas alone. That is a whole lot of money. And what is sad is that it was spent without the country being able to show for it. I think it is quite unfortunate. 

For the sake of emphasis, however, I think if previous administrations had developed a culture for prudent management of resources, Nigeria ought to have over $100 billion saved in the excess crude account. So, going forward, it is necessary for government to think about saving a lot more, and do all it can as well to cut down on wasteful spending if the nation must make progress.