Statutory payments: NDDC warns IOCs not to pay into private accounts

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By Ikenna Omeje

The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has warned International Oil Companies and other oil firms operating in the region not to make payment or remit the statutory 3 percent to the commission into any private bank account, as it did not authorize any agency to collect remittances on its behalf.

According to a release by the Director, Corporate Affairs, NDDC, Charles Obi Odili, this warning followed information made available to the commission that a security agency, working with unauthorised private individuals, is forcing IOCs to remit the three percent levy due to the commission to a private bank account in the United Kingdom.

NDDC advised IOCs and other companies operating in the region to insist on making such payments  to the NDDC account with the Central Bank of Nigeria, but not to any other agency’s account, when invited on such purpose, adding that any oil company forced to make such payments should report same immediately to its Director of Legal Services.

The commission called on any security agency wishing to recover unremitted funds from the IOCs or oil companies operating in the region to do so in collaboration with its management.

 The statement reads: “It has come to the attention of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, that a security agency, working with unauthorised private individuals, is coercing international oil companies to pay the three percent levy due to the Commission to a private account in the United Kingdom.

“This is an alarming development and a clear case of illegality by elements within that security agency. We wish to state that the law setting up NDDC does not provide for the collection of its revenue by any agency other than the Commission. Secondly, extant rules, particularly the Treasury Single Account (TSA) regime, mean that all revenue due to any agency of government can only be paid to that agency’s account in the Central Bank of Nigeria.

“The Niger Delta Development Commission wishes to alert the general public and all stakeholders that it has not authorized any security agency to collect remittances on its behalf. Such payments and or remittances shall never count as statutory payments to the NDDC.

“Accordingly, any oil company, invited on such purposes should insist on payment of any such sum to the NDDC account with the Central Bank of Nigeria but not to any other agency’s account.

“Any security agency wishing to recover unremitted funds from the IOCs or oil companies operating in the Niger Delta region should do so in collaboration with the management of the NDDC and such refunds should be directed into the accounts of the NDDC with the Central Bank of Nigeria, but not otherwise

“Any oil company coerced to make such payments should report same immediately to Mr Clever Okoro, Director, Legal Services, of the Commission on +234 813 011 7590.”

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