The Department of State Services, DSS, on Saturday disclosed that the Managing-Director of Capital Oil and Gas Limited and publisher of Authority Newspaper, Ifeanyi Ubah is in its custody over an alleged diversion of petroleum products worth N11 billion.
It said that Ubah, earlier questioned some weeks ago, was re-arrested on Friday over his alleged engagements in acts, which the security outfit described as inimical to national security.
According to a statement signed by its official, Mr. Tony Opuiyo, in Abuja, DSS said Ubah was accused of stealing, diversion and illegal sale of petroleum products stored in his tank farm by the Nigeria Petroleum Products Corporation, NNPC.
The secret police put the cost of the stolen product at more than N11bn, adding that such acts were impacting negatively on the national economy.
Opuiyo said that the arrest and the detention of Ubah was on the basis of DSS’ power to investigate economic crimes of national security dimension.
The statement reads, “In line with the statutory mandate of the DSS to investigate economic crimes of national security dimension, the Service, on May 5, 2017, arrested Ifeanyi Ubah, Managing Director of Capital Oil and Gas Limited.
“The arrest was sequel to UBAH’s engagement in acts of economic sabotage which include stealing, diversion and illegal sale of petroleum products stored in his tank farm by the Nigeria NNPC.
“So far, it has been established that the products stolen amount to over Eleven Billion Naira (N11bn). There is no doubt that UBAH’s acts have the capacity to negatively impact on national economy.”
The DSS official added that Ubah had further engaged in other activities, which he noted, were detrimental to national security and public order.
This was as the oil magnate was accused of inciting members of the Petroleum Tanker Drivers to embark on strike because of his (Ubah’s) investigation by the DSS.
Opuiyo stated that this was part of the plans by the detained businessman to curry the favour of the public and force the government from going on with the recovery of the funds in his possession.
According to the statement, “It is instructive to note that UBAH has further engaged in other activities inimical to national security and public order. In furtherance of his gimmicks to undermine the government and people of Nigeria, he has incited members of the Petroleum Tanker Drivers, a critical player in the downstream sub-sector of the Petroleum Industry, to refuse/stop the lifting of products.
“This is part of his plans to curry their sentiments and cause them to embark on strike and also stage protests in his favour with the ulterior motive of arm-twisting the NNPC to abandon the cause of recovering the stolen products.
“The implications of this on law and order is, in fact, a common knowledge. It is consequent upon this that the Service arrested and will prosecute him forthwith.”
The service said it would collaborate with relevant agencies to ensure that mischievous activities of any person or group(s) to engage in illegal activities will not affect the effective distribution of products across the country.
Opuiyo added that the DSS would also support such agencies to bring to book individuals or companies involved in any criminal act that undermines the nation’s economy. The Will
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