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NOI responds to “Oshiomhole’s Baseless Diatribe against Okonjo-Iweala”

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Okonjo-IwealaFollowing Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole‘s statements targeted at the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the Minister’s reps have responded.

Read below;
It is no surprise that a few days after the Federal Ministry of Finance published the details of what the Federal and State governments received from the Excess Crude Account over the past four years, Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State has launched an attack against the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. His article “Economy: Okonjo-Iweala’s hidden figures” is full of gaping holes, both in facts and logic.

Obviously, for daring to publish how the ECA was shared and showing that governors who cannot pay salaries have no excuses, Okonjo-Iweala is being targeted. It is noteworthy that several of their colleagues have been able to manage their finances reasonably well under these same difficult circumstances.

The release of the ECA details has also demonstrated very clearly that there is no substance in the wild allegations that any money is missing from the account or that finances of the country under Okonjo-Iweala watch have not been well managed.

Like previous baseless allegations by some Governors, the motive behind Oshiomhole’s attack is clear: to deflect public attention away from the manner in which they have run the finances of their states and make Okonjo-Iweala the scapegoat. If it was meant to intimidate the Minister, it has failed abysmally.

How can Governor Oshiomhole claim that state governors were not properly briefed on the status of the ECA when his commissioner of finance attends all the FAAC meetings where decisions are taken and communicated to the nation?

This diversionary tactic will not succeed because Nigerians are too smart to buy into this fiction. Secondly, the Finance Ministry under Okonjo-Iweala, the Minister who started the practice of publishing details of allocations from the Federation Account to all the three tiers of government, has regularly furnished Nigerians with information on the country’s finances.

Governor Oshiomhole’s statement that Okonjo-Iweala “must disclose to the nation the full details of subsidy payments made to oil marketers in the last four years” is therefore astonishing given the fact that EVERY payment made to the marketers has been published in the media and widely disseminated through all news channels.

Oshiomhole’s allegation that Okonjo-Iweala has not been transparent is ridiculous and totally lacking in merit. Apart from the monthly publication of allocations to the federal, state and local governments, the Federal Ministry of Finance under Okonjo-Iweala also publishes SURE-P receipts and distribution to different tiers, details of payments to oil marketers and other information.

Has Governor Oshiomhole demonstrated the same level of openness in his management of the affairs of Edo State? Can Oshiomhole also go public with ALL the information showing what he has received from various sources and the uses to which he has deployed them?

Equally incomprehensible – for a supposedly smart Governor – is Oshiomhole’s claim that the CME has “just woken up from her slumber to realize that oil marketers have been all along falsifying subsidy claims and defrauding the nation of billions of Naira”. This statement underscores the extent to which he is willing to go in his desperation to tar Okonjo-Iweala. When she returned as Finance Minister in 2011, the outstanding fuel subsidy bill was about N1.3 trillion. It was the work done on subsidy fraud by the Aig-Imoukhuede Committee which the Minister set up, later elevated into a presidential panel that determined that over N300 billion of the amount was fraudulent. This eventually led to the prosecution of some persons for subsidy fraud and reduction of the annual subsidy budget to N791 billion, saving the country over a trillion naira in the process. Maybe it is His Excellency who was snoring while this was going on. Such baseless posturing only serves to diminish the credibility of Oshiomhole in the minds of objective Nigerians.

For the record, Dr. Okonjo-Iweala has no apologies for insisting that a claim of N159 billion for forex differentials by the marketers out of a total bill of N200 billion should go through an additional verification process. When 80% of a subsidy claim is made up of forex differentials and not the value of the amount of fuel supplied, the right and proper thing to do is to take extra steps to ensure that the country is not being cheated. That is what Okonjo-Iweala did.

Oshiomhole’s allegation that the Minister is involved in “an unholy alliance” with government agencies and the marketers is therefore manifestly untrue and totally irresponsible. How can a minister against whom the oil marketers have conducted a very public campaign of calumny be in league with them? A decent public official should not make such scurrilous and unsubstantiated statements.

The most laughable part of Oshiomhole’s article is the claim that Okonjo-Iweala has been speaking out lately because of the “fear of Buhari”. Nigerians know this is ridiculous. If there is any minister whose voice has been strong on the right issues over the past four years it is Okonjo-Iweala. Okonjo-Iweala combines a stalwart integrity, a mastery of her mandate and the courage of her convictions. She therefore has no reason to fear. Those who cannot adequately explain what they did with the resources of their states and are begging for bailout are those who should to be scared.

Paul C Nwabuikwu
Special Adviser to the Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance

28 Comments

  1. Diddy

    May 29, 2015 at 1:58 am

    AdaNnewi abi na Ada ukpo over to u,i dont know if u r the mouth piece of oshiomole or apc as a whole but stop this ur sentimental judgement,i dont support any party,i wish buhari success in his regime,but pray the apc live up to expectation if not shame na ur own,u don too carry apc like se na ur birth right but take am easy cos politics na game and i can bet u r not good at it,and ur awareness is not good enough try harder.as for oshiomole this is a guy who used to stand for the masses against the govt when they felt they r being oppress,but today is a different ball game,what i know is that All of u politicians are all the same from A to Z

    • Ada Nnewi

      May 29, 2015 at 10:44 am

      Please type your rant/comment in proper english so I can understand you and reply appropriately…

    • Diddy

      May 29, 2015 at 11:35 am

      Rant/comment in proper english?oh i forgot u were born and raised in UK,so i dont expect u to understand my improper english,if u dont have anyting to say just park make pple see road abeg.mtcheew

    • commmy

      May 29, 2015 at 11:21 am

      Na who even call her type for APC party, am sure she is all these I wanna belong babe

    • Angel

      May 29, 2015 at 3:50 pm

      Seriously why pay heed to AdaNnewi? For all u know she/he is not even a woman, but a man from northern part of Nigeria or something, anybody can hide behind a computer & type crap. He or she is one of ’em APC propaganda, unfortunately for them, some of us can actually see through their bs and we ain’t buying it.

    • Busarni

      May 29, 2015 at 7:41 pm

      @diddy; I raise my left nyash for you ooh. I am just here minding my bissshnessss. Lol.

  2. A Real Nigerian

    May 29, 2015 at 2:20 am

    Just another vile person who has been corrupted and has no dignity whatsoever.
    It must be gut-wrenching working for this overweight and obnoxious old grandma who is nothing but a petty thief. But hey, people as cheap as Paul Nwa-whatever will do anything for the money.

    • Flakkysaidso

      May 29, 2015 at 3:56 am

      A Real (dumb) Nigerian, your argument is so warped and unintelligent. Before you come with another lame post, did you actually read how much each State Governor has collected from The Federation Account? What is your point of slinging mud at Madam Ngozi for stating facts about who collected what? Or is was that too difficult for you to assimilate? Please! If you prefer to talk gutter talk, then cross over to some other less intelligent blogs to post your illogical and baseless comments. We deal with well thought out analysis here!

    • chichi

      May 29, 2015 at 4:07 am

      Vile? Look in the mirror first. Where do you come off calling her an overweight and obnoxious old grandma who is nothing but a petty thief? I am all for freedom of speech but who is this impertinent brat?

    • A Real Nigerian

      May 29, 2015 at 10:04 am

      Look in the mirror first? Who uses that anymore? Are you 7 or are we still in the 90s?

    • chichi

      May 30, 2015 at 8:04 am

      Lool..chichi does!. What can I say? Im cool like that 😉

    • Missy Kay

      May 29, 2015 at 8:15 pm

      Pls. can we see your mother’s picture?

  3. imose

    May 29, 2015 at 2:25 am

    Who stole the meat from the cooking pot ? Number one stole the meat from the cooking pot , who me? Yes you ! It couldn’t be then who?? I laugh in bini language !!
    Nothing but wonders and blame game here and there. Nigeria go survive shaa.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      May 29, 2015 at 9:45 pm

      Hahahahaha! Ahhhh, that sing just brought back memories…, And very apt. 🙂

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      May 29, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      *that song*

      Bloody autocorrect. 🙂

  4. Feelitx

    May 29, 2015 at 2:58 am

    Me thinks she has more integrity than all the Governors combined.

    • whatwillbewillbe

      May 29, 2015 at 8:04 am

      I agree.

    • shopperoflife

      May 29, 2015 at 8:17 pm

      Thank you. Commenting here is free. So, it is expected that we must contend with a few miscreants.

    • Miz Bee

      May 29, 2015 at 9:54 pm

      I couldn’t agree more. If not for the love of her country, what would she be doing here when she has a world bank job? Do you think if she was dispensable and lacked integrity that job would still be waiting for her? Indeed a prophet isn’t respected in his own abode.

  5. The K

    May 29, 2015 at 3:06 am

    “A word to a wise is enough”. NOI might have made mistakes, but certainly not with any of the issues raised by Gov. Adams O. #MyOpinion

  6. LOL

    May 29, 2015 at 7:34 am

    Do you mean diatribe not *distribe @BN

  7. Naked

    May 29, 2015 at 8:35 am

    The jury is out… Let it be known to them that it will never be business as usual. Every allegations and counter allegations must be probed and investigated by the incoming government and the guilty should pay dearly for it.

  8. Peaches77

    May 29, 2015 at 8:41 am

    Oshiomole, it’s so surprising that you can actually say that NOI is just realizing that subsidy scam exists.. Really, really?? These politicians eeh. What was 2012 attempt on subsidy removal all about then? You were a part of the committee including NOI, SLS etc. who came out on tv (I particularly watched it on channels) to tell Nigerians about the subsidy scam. In fact that period birthed the now famous ‘oil cabal’.. Haba politicians fear God.

  9. bruno FIERCE

    May 29, 2015 at 9:13 am

    madame okonjo, how did u get ur gele to sit on your head like that. its amazing
    pls do a youtube tutorial on how to tie ur iconic gele.

    people like attacking mrs okonjo because she’s a woman. nigerian politicians are terribly sexist.

    • Seriously

      May 29, 2015 at 5:11 pm

      Women are fighting for equality right? Let her be questioned, probed, and criticized the way a man in that position will be. She needs to be held accountable. Let’s stop taking everything so personal especially if you are hired to do a certain job but the worst is happening. The way she handles it, is what will build her integrity/character more. She can address and respond to the accusations. Nigerians, stop using ethnic and sexism accusation as an excuse to live in denial and run away from your responsibility. Many Igbos also believe she’s criticized mainly bcos she’s Igbo. It’s preposterous

      Nigeria’s economy is currently in shambles, and the president and finance department play and should take the main responsibility.

    • warizdiz

      May 29, 2015 at 8:21 pm

      Bruno Fierce, did u actually write this or someone stole ur avatar? Yaaa, change is here. (I voted PDP o and PDP for life)

  10. MEE

    May 29, 2015 at 10:11 am

    Let this woman be abeg. Nigeria’s economy isn’t easy to run,( especially with a lot of people who don’t want its progress for their personal gain), same applies for other countries. It’s not like he would have done a better job. Pot calling kettle black.

  11. ojie

    May 29, 2015 at 1:28 pm

    I understand the point he is driving at. But I believe that Mr Paul should make his case known without being excessively dramatic and insulting in his delivery.

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