Senate Probes Elusive PTI Vessel

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The Senate is set to unravel the mystery surrounding the unending contract and the yearly budgetary provisions for a petroleum training ship yet to duck anywhere near Nigeria.

A Joint Committee of the National Assembly and the Oil and Gas sector have also resolved to dig up mysteries behind its elusiveness.

The multi-billion naira diving support vessel is for the training of students at the Petroleum Training Institute, Effurun, Delta State. It was awarded and partly paid for since 2009.

Speaking at a budget defence, Sen. Emmanuel Paulker, Chairman Senate Committee on Petroleum (Up-Stream), announced the intention of the Joint Committee to embark on exploration drive to secure the vessel no matter where it is located.

“Let me comment on PTI, I was chairman of downstream petroleum for four years and the issue of that vessel was reflected in every year’s budget, this committee lacks a comprehensive report on that vessel, vis-a- vis the amount so far expended on it.

“You should also indicate whether the vessel we are about receiving is the very vessel we have been paying money for.

It is good we set up a Joint Committee among ourselves to go and see that vessel because the investment was much.

“There was no year, as chairman, that issue was not reflecting. We will set up a committee to go and see that vessel whether it is in England, or anywhere in this world”, he said.

The Ministry of Petroleum Resources was said to have through the PTI released over N985 million to Netsach Limited, but it is yet to arrivethe Nigerian shores.

A visit to Singapore by the Senate Committee on Petroleum in May, 2010, also failed to secure the vessel’s delivery as it was found in a bad shape.

The delegation later recommended that the vessel should be repaired in Singapore and brought to Nigeria. Three years down the line, the Vessel had remained a recurring decimal on the Nigerian fiscal instruments.

In 2010, N173 million was budgeted for it, but N142 was released, and in the current financial year (2012), about N915,759,651 has been proposed for the project.

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