Former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, has revealed that Nigeria lost about $1bn (N197bn) every month under former President Goodluck Jonathan.
Sanusi revealed this during a programme titled ‘How a cancer of corruption steals Nigerian oil, weapons and lives’, which aired on The PBS NewsHour, an American daily evening television show.
The former CBN governor noted that many shady deals took place under the immediate past Minister of Petroleum, Diezani Alison-Madueke, who is being investigated in the United Kingdom.
He said, “In Nigeria, there is no accountability at all and that is why I think Nigeria’s corruption is worse than corruption in most parts of the world. It is the worst type of corruption. It’s stealing.
“Frankly, I think a billion dollars under Jonathan a month was about what we were losing.”
Sanusi averred that during Alison-Madueke’s tenure as petroleum minister, people paid as low as $50m for access to crude oil blocs valued at over $2bn.
He said, “Basically, all it does is allow a group of people, who themselves don’t have any kind of operating background, to pay $50m for access to the crude oil in blocs, valued at over $2bn and they just take the crude oil, ship it out and don’t return the money and there is no trace of where the money has gone.
“Someone gets a contract to lift crude from the terminals to the refineries and in between, that crude is stolen; it is stolen on the high sea.”
Sanusi, who was fired by Jonathan in February 2014 for alleging that $20bn was missing from the account of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, said if the former petroleum minister was found guilty by a UK court, it would serve as a deterrent to corrupt people.
“If she goes to court and is jailed for example, it sends a signal; I think that there is a day of reckoning,” he said.
The US television show quoted United States and UK authorities as saying that Alison-Madueke might have “personally overseen the stealing of $6bn. The most common method is awarding oil contracts to companies owned by friends.”
It alleged that the second most common method of stealing oil was to make oil ships disappear mysteriously.
The PBS NewsHour said it had in its possession a letter written by the embattled former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), and addressed to the CBN, requesting $47m.
The letter, which was written on the letterhead of the Office of the NSA, titled ‘Request of Funds for Special Services’ with reference number, NSA/366S, was dated November, 2014.
According to the US television show, which has over four million viewers weekly, the money was given to the ONSA in cash and was conveyed in armoured vehicles at midnight.
In a second document on the letterhead of the NNPC and addressed to the Director, Banking and Payments of the CBN, the CBN was asked to give the National Intelligence Agency, which was under the leadership of Dasuki, $289,202,382.
This was despite the fact that the NIA’s budget was only $160m for the year.