How NOCAL Millions Disappear
US$0.7m spent on BYC
The New Democrat has seen document containing extravagant and questionable spending that could have led to the death of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL).
NOCAL has grounded for the first time in more than a decade after hitting bankruptcy that seems rooted in financial mismanagement and waste.
The Liberia Anti Corruption Commission (LACC) is currently finally conducting an economic crimes investigation into the Oil Company’s shocking collapse.
But based on historical financial records it is easy to conclude on why and how NOCAL melted into bankruptcy coupled with the identification of the hands that looted the company.
For instance, US$700,000 of the company’s fund was used to purchase three acres of wet land for the BYC Football Club situated at the rear of the Kalando Gas Station in the Congo Town community.
BYC is the private football club, which Robert Sirleaf – the son of the President owns. Mr. Sirleaf was Chairman of the Board of Directors at NOCAL during the purchase.
The New Democrat understands that the Ministry of Public Works and the Environmental Protection Agency have ruled that the wet land in question is a prohibited area for construction. The land was bought to build a football stadium for BYC. There is no evidence that the transaction was done in accordance with the Public Procurement and Concession law.
Also US$100,000 was spent to acquire a bullet proof vehicle for Mr. Sirleaf while there was a one time air ticket/travel reimbursement of US$24,000 to Mr. Sirleaf.
With respect to the 2014 failed oil bid round, record shows that Us$500,000 was spent for air tickets and DSA (Daily Sustenance Allowance). This amount was used when the country was in need of funding to combat the Ebola Virus Disease public health disaster that more than 5,000 Liberians.
The total amount of US$200,000 has been spent since 2013 on the travel expense of the current chair of the interim management team at NOCAL – Cllr. Althea Sherman.
Mr. Joseph Kabakollie the former Board member now heading communication told the New Democrat to write a letter to NOCAL outlining the press inquiry before official comments are provided.
Corruption has been at the heart of the country’s hydrocarbon sector management.
NOCAL has been one of the lucrative state owned enterprises in the country netting millions of United States dollars from various multinational oil companies.
There has been no anticipation that the company’s mega dollar status will die soon given the virgin nature of the nation’s hydrocarbon industry that attracted billion dollar oil giants like Chevron and Exxon-Mobil.
The economic and energy potential of the sector also sparked geopolitical fight between key global power including the United States, Russia and China in a bid for strategic oil basins.
In the process millions of dollars were generated via signatures fees, licensing and geo seismic data information.
But for some reasons mainly bordering on waste and fishy expenditure the Company’s estimated financial reserve which trustworthy administration official sources estimated at US$100 million in a single financial year has melted.
In recent years millions of dollars generated in revenue at NOCAL are spent on officials and unknown expenditure lines.
For Instance the Company in 2012/13 reported US$148 million in generated revenue and Spent US$138 million on unspecified expenditure items.
The probe is on and in the next series the New Democrat will focus on the company’s multiple and hidden accounts.