The Nigerian government has succeeded in compelling the Chairman of Atlantic Energy Drilling Concepts Nigeria Limited, Jide Omokore to cough out over $14m, being crude oil royalty which his company failed to remit to the federal treasury, administration insiders said.
High ranking federal officials familiar with the development told this newspaper that the funds were supposed to have been paid between 2011 and 2012 by Atlantic Energy which was, in controversial circumstances, awarded oil assets by the Goodluck Jonathan government shortly after it was incorporated in 2010.
Sources said the money was finally paid into the Federal Government’s account with JP Morgan Chase on January 29, after the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission waded into the matter of recovering taxes due to the Federal Government.
“The investigation of tax defaulters in the dollar-soaked oil industry is continuing,” a source at the EFCC said Wednesday. “Those who failed to willingly pay up stand the risk of arrest and prosecution for tax fraud.”
Operatives of the EFCC had on January 27 questioned Mr. Omokore, an ally of former President Jonathan in connection with a series of multi-billion dollar crude export deals.
Mr. Omokore could not be reached for comments Wednesday. But his company recently issued a statement saying it was getting back on course after submitting its plan to settle outstanding financial commitments to the Nigerian authorities.