Nigeria: Reps probe US$43 million Oceaneering deal

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Abuja — House of Representatives Committee on Public Procurement on Wednesday began investigations into the controversial award of $43 million contract for the supply of remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) by oil firm Total Upstream Nigeria Limited (TUPNI) to Oceaneering International AG of Switzerland contrary to approval given by the board of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
Acting on a petition from Messrs Tilone Nigeria Limited to the committee chaired by Yusuf Tuggar (PDP, Bauchi), the lawmakers summoned the management of TUPNI, NNPC as well as the petitioner to appear before them.
TUPNI, however, refused to show up thereby drawing the ire of the committee members who threatened to invoke their constitutional powers to compel the firm to appear before them.The committee also threatened to slam a heavy fine on the company for failure to honour the summons.
Meanwhile, Managing Director of Tilone, Stanford Tassie, has claimed that his company actually bided for the contract in 2006 and won it ahead of Oceaneering but that TUPNI went on to award it to the latter in defiance of NNPC’s board directives.
He told the committee that his original bid was falsified by TUPNI so that the contract could be awarded to a foreign company in contradiction to the Federal Government’s local contents initiatives.

allafrica.com

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