Nigeria’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has setup a panel to probe Oando, an oil company owned and run by Wale Tinubu, a cousin to the former Governor Bola Tinubu of Lagos State. Mr. Bola Tinubu, a national member of the All Progressives Party (APC), is also in business partnership with Mr. Wale Tinubu.
A petition filed by two of Oando’s major shareholders triggered SEC’s investigation of the oil firm. The two petitioners are Dahiru Mangal and Italian businessman, Gabriel Volpi.
Both petitioners have filed at least four lawsuits against Oando following a failed business move in which the firm acquired oil infrastructures from CONOCO Phillips in Nigeria. The questionable deal cost Oando approximately $1.5 billion. Mr. Volpi reportedly gave Oando’s Wale Tinubu the sum of $900 million to effect the deal. In addition, Mr. Mangal reportedly contributed $250 million while former Vice President Atiku Abubakar contributed $50 million to the purchase which proved a disastrous investment for Oando. The petitioners are alleging mismanagement and ownership fraud on the part of the company’s operators.
A source at SEC said the commission’s investigators had so far found evidence that Oando had “been piling its books for the past six years, creating the impression that it was making a profit when in fact the company was swimming in debts and overburdened by mismanagement.”
Mr. Wale Tinubu is believed to be the root in Oando’s financial and investment crisis. Our SEC source stated that Mr. Tinubu’s stake in the company fell to a minuscule one percent after he secured funds from Mr. Volpi, former VP Atiku, and Mr. Mangal.
Governor Tinubu apparently counted on using his political influence with the Muhammadu Buhari administration to re-inject life into Oando, “but that hasn’t happened.”
President Buhari frequently used Mr. Wale Tinubu’s private jet during the 2015 electoral campaign. In addition, the businessman was reportedly liberal with cash donations to the campaign, according to a political source.
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