January 26, 2022

NBET: Foreign Account And Companies Used For Siphoning Government Funds Linked To Marilyn Amobi, MD/CEO Of NBET

4 min read

New evidence has surfaced showing that the embattled MD/CEO of Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc. (NBET), Dr. Marilyn Amobi, has continued to enrich herself in flagrant disregard for public service rules and in defiance of President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption stance.

Documents exclusively obtained from UK showed that Dr. Amobi is the current Director and Major Shareholder in ESL Economics and Management Associates Ltd registered in both Nigeria and London with RC Number 1025108 (751030) and 06413894 respectively.

Her business partner is Prof. Eric Reiner Larsen, a lecturer at Aarhus University and Amobi’s former project supervisor. Marilyn Amobi approved the accounts and signed for the financial years ended 31st October 2019, 2018, 2017 and 2016 for ESL Economics and Management Associates Ltd, London.

The last one was signed by her on the 5th of November 2019 which explained the capital flight rationale where she transferred 90,000 British Pounds (approx. N49 million naira) from her account number ODA 0003652593 with Stanbic IBTC Bank to her British Pound Sterling’s account in London in 2018.

Dr. Amobi, in collusion with her business partner Prof. Larsen, looted monies allotted for capacity building in the power sector through a private arrangement with Dr Amobi and channeled it through Aarhus University Denmark (where Larsen holds other appointments).

The contract was executed by Jacob Kjaer Eskildsen and Dr Amobi in November 2017. Using her position as MD/CEO of NBET, Dr. Amobi commandeered the resources and pushed her staff on a futile learning expedition to Denmark in more than four batches, with the first batch costing $50,747.66 (USD) which is approximately N22 million naira for a batch without a formal procurement process and in total disregard to the embargo on foreign training.

Dr. Amobi is on a fast track to empty the treasury of the power sector fund. Her insatiable taste for ill-gotten wealth is bewildering. Most shocking is the audacity of impunity and brigandage brazenly she perpetrates at NBET.

A neophyte in the Nigerian Power Sector, the appointment of Dr. Amobi as MD/CEO in the Buhari Administration is a huge mistake that could have been avoided if her academic, leadership and mental state were properly scrutinized. Dr. Amobi has no record of performance in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) prior to her appointment in NBET.

Infact her patronage of the sector was through the peddling of classroom courses for her private consulting business (ESL Economics and Management Associates Ltd). A copy of her resume made available to us shows that she had a one-year stint with BC Hydro & Power Authority Vancouver in 2009, and another one-year stint with Hydro One Networks Toronto in 2006; all her years from 1999 till her appointment in NBET was either schooling or selling courses for ESL private consulting firm.

With just two years of functional experience, she clearly lacks leadership and teamwork skills. It’s no surprise that she turns the office premises to a battle ground with her staff, thus creating a system where alternate views are squashed, while flattery and servility are rewarded. Dr. Amobi has created a monstrous culture at NBET, where staff speak in hush tones because they are being recorded at work and a possibility that their private lines are tapped.

In a case against her staff, when Dr. Amobi arrived at the DSS (Department of State Security) Office, she tendered a USB of private conversations of her staff. Interestingly, the DSS failed to inquire from Dr. Amobi the source of her recordings, thus letting her off so easily without a charge for breaching staff privacy and abuse of power.

The mental health of Marilyn Amobi is also a huge concern to all. In recent times she has continued to display fits of aggression and excessive shouting during meetings with staff and other stakeholders. Recently, she was petitioned for threatening physical bodily harm to one of her management staff, but for the timely intervention of those present, it would have been a different story or maybe a possible homicide.

Dr. Amobi is cognitively wired to understand only the language of subservience, where no staff or appointee can express an alternate view. She only sees across two divides where her staff are either acolytes or enemies, thus running an oppressive administration where she clamps down on perceived enemies, rendering her staff redundant and firing them for standing and speaking the truth.

Dr. Marilyn Amobi has looted and wasted public funds to hold on to power at all costs including plunging the Nigerian Power Sector into more crises, debts and darkness. Her highest investment costs aside the illegal procurement of cars (which is distributed as gifts to allies) is her media and legal representation costs where she attempts to push forward her claim to integrity.

Dr. Amobi is dangerously power-hungry and is ready to trample on anything on her path for a renewed season of thievery at NBET.She has issued threats to various media organizations and civil society organizations, threatening them with litigations for libel and defamation of character.

Dr. Amobi is as unfortunately intriguing as she is laughable. She threatens in the morning but comes around at night to beg for forgiveness. It is important to note that the embattled MD/CEO has either lost all her cases or have them thrown out for lack of merit despite her public bravado.

The entire value chain in the power sector has severally raised their voices on the atrocities and high-handedness being perpetrated by Dr Amobi, but the administration of President Buhari has no immediate solution because of the powers who shared the loot with her. Now is the time for this administration whose mantra is war against corruption to suspend and prosecute Dr. Amobi.

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