Recent open letter to President Sirleaf by the former Chief Executive Officer of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL), Dr. Christopher Neyor where he opened up top secrets including the much talked about the Nigerian and Kuwati oil deals which according to him he negotiated on behalf of the Government of Liberia and the Liberia Petroleum Refining Company is deepening on a daily basis with the management of the Liberia Petroleum Refining Company responding fast.
In its reaction to Neyor’s assertions in his open letter stated “The LPRC reserves judgment on the motive of the Montserrado County Senatorial Aspirant’s “Open Letter” but cannot permit these brazen lies and insinuations to fester unchallenged in the public domain”.
According to the LPRC it is unaware, and the public records do not support claims by Mr. Neyor that he “initiated and spearheaded negotiations” with the Nigerian and Kuwaiti Governments for the allocation of crude oil for Liberia.
Stated the LPRC “In the case of the Nigerian allocation, the President wrote the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria requesting the allocation. The Presidential Letter neither introduced Mr. Neyor nor did it mention him as the responsible party to follow-up on the negotiations, which is often the case with such “quiet diplomacy”.
On the Kuwaiti Oil Agreement, the LPRC said it recalled that Mr. Neyor was amongst officials of the government who accompanied President Sirleaf on a State visit to Kuwait and was present when the Liberian leader requested diesel fuel to be sold to Liberia at concessionary prices by the Government of Kuwait.
The LPRC accused Neyor of holding secret meetings and discussions at the same time requesting additional US$ 8 million from the Kuwatis without reference to President Sirleaf. The LPRC also accused Neyor, “Mr. Neyor, for reasons unknown to the LPRC, held secret meetings and unauthorized discussions with the Kuwatis. It was subsequently revealed that contrary to the original request of the Liberian Government, an additional request of US$8 Million was made by Mr. Neyor without any reference to the President”.
In the words of the LPRC, it is in no position to judge the motive of Mr. Neyor but said it is, however, pleased to report that the ongoing discussions are proving to be fruitful and rewarding with Mr. T. Nelson Williams of the LPRC and Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Sylvester Grisby representing the Liberian Government in these negotiations.
Neyor the man at the center of the entire discussion quickly hit back at LPRC MD Nelson Williams describing him as one who could win an award for fiction. He lashed at Williams “Mr. T Nelson Williams could easily win an award for fiction. I wonder how one like T Nelson sleeps at night when he fabricates such outright lies in his attempt to defend the indefensible revelation in my Open Letter to the President on the section dealing with oil allocation negotiations with the governments of Nigeria and Kuwait and utilization of proceeds”.
But Neyor stated that he maintained all the information provided in his open letter to the President and will provide documentary evidence at any time. On the Nigerian Oil deal, Neyor revealed” When the first round of oil allocation from Nigeria expired amid controversy, President Sirleaf was hesitant to reapply. When I advised her that renewal and proper management of oil allocation could help reduce electricity cost and with other development projects. I told her I had connections in Nigeria that could assist and that’s when she consented for me to start the quiet diplomacy. Here are evidences to that effect”.
Neyor attached photographs, including meetings held with Nigerian officials and an email dated October 26, 2009 to President Sirleaf’s Special Assistant following a successful meeting with the Nigerian Oil Minister in Abuja, photo with the then Nigerian Petroleum Resources Minister Dr. Rilwanu Lukman, photo with Liberia Ambassador to Nigeria Dr. Alhassan Conteh at the Liberian Embassy and copy of letter Neyor said he drafted which he noted was later signed by President Sirleaf and sent to her Nigerian counterpart.
On the Kuwati Oil deal, Neyor also stated that there are evidences that speak volume on both his initiation and leadership of the transaction, including memorandum to President Sirleaf dated May 14, 2010 during preparation for Kuwait’s visit that gives genesis of the oil allocation application to Kuwait, letter dated June 17, 2010 to Kuwaiti Oil Minister following state visit of President Sirleaf to Kuwait where crude oil allocation assistance for electricity was discussed with him.
Neyor furthered that he prepared Oil Assistance Request proposal attached to the letter to the Kuwait Oil Minister and also wrote a letter to CEO of Kuwait Petroleum Corporation dated January 28, 2011 while serving as CEO of NOCAL, accepting invitation to visit Kuwait as arranged by Liberia Ambassador Konah Blackett.
“I headed a delegation that included the late TarnueMawolo then Minister of State without Portfolio, Cheriff Abdullah and my Chief of Staff Edward Smith. Modified proposal sent to the Kuwaitis following inside information that grant could be given to upset the cost of power generation fuel in Liberia. "
"The $8 million grant at $4 million a year was the equivalent cost of fuel we needed to make electricity cheaper for our citizens. This was based on official back and forward discussions and adjustments as result of more information. There was nothing sinister or unauthorized about this proposal, as Mr. Williams wants to insinuate” Neyor disclosed.
Since Neyor’s Open Letter to President Sirleaf which unveiled some dubious transactions by the Government in many deals at NOCAL and elsewhere, Neyor has come under criticism from some state entities including the LPRC. Robert Sirleaf has already moved describing Neyor’s letter as a political tool ahead of the 2014 senatorial election.
Story Credit: FPA