Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has taken responsibility for granting authorisation to the NNPC for two oil contracts worth N640 billion.
But the vice-president's admittance Thursday laid to rest a substantial part of the allegation by the minister that the contracts were awarded without a recourse to the Board of NNPC which he chairs in alleged violation of the NNPC Act.
"Action was necessary to deal with huge backlog of unpaid cash calls which Buhari administration inherited and also to incentivise much needed fresh investments in the oil and gas sector", Akande said.
Osinbajo denied in another tweet while he was still in Bonny Island Rivers State where he had gone to flag off the Bodo-Bonny Road project.
The statement quoted Osinbajo as saying: "These were financing loans". Of course, you know what the Joint Ventures with the lOCs like Chevron are.
"While the President was away, I granted authorization which is what the law provides".
But it was observed in some media reports that the two contracts were awarded when the President was away from the country.
The statement referred to the earlier tweets but stopped short of denying the contents.
Kachikwu in his memo to President Buhari, also stated that when the president was unwell in London for several months between May and August, Baru tried to get direct approval from Acting President Osinbajo for some personnel changes at the NNPC.
The contract saga is related to the accusations of the Minister of state for petroleum resources Ibe Kachikwu, against accused the group managing director (GMD) of the NNPC Maikanti Baru.
Kachikwu, had in a leaked letter dated August 30, 2017 and addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari, alleged that Baru awarded contracts to the tune of $25 billion and simultaneously made senior executive appointments without due consultations with the Board of the NNPC as required by law.