President Yar’adua has explained that pressures from the German Government forced Nigeria to lift the ban placed on Siemens from benefiting from contracts awards by the Federal Government of Nigeria
The administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo had earlier placed a contract ban on the German firm due to Siemens’s indictment corrupt practices in Nigeria
In an interview with Guardian reporters recently, President said his administration lifted the ban, Yar’adua due to pressures from the German Chancellor, and in order to benefit from an investment opportunity by the German government.
“The Siemens issue, yes it is true that we lifted the ban. To be candid, when we went for the African Union-European Union Summit in Portugal, the Chancellor of Germany discussed specifically on Siemens and assured me that the German government had taken all the steps required and that it had made the company itself – Siemens – to undergo such restructuring and changes.
The German government pleaded on behalf of our relationship that we should lift the blacklisting because the company now had a totally new management and that the German government was giving the Nigerian government assurance and guarantee that what happened would never happen again.
We accepted this request in the interest of Nigerian-German relationship. We acceded to the request of the German Chancellor because sometimes, there are things, which involve relations between nations to maintain good relationship among countries especially at the time we are engaged in negotiating the Nigerian-German energy partnership. I did not want us to jeopardise that opportunity and that is so far all we have been doing to get investment in the energy sector.
“Indeed, the partnership we have been negotiating is the first one that will provide a concrete result because that is the first partnership that we have discussed that has reached concrete agreement for investment in gas production to the tune of about $1.6 billion dollars. Then we have reached a conclusion and they have agreed that part of partnership will go completely for the domestic gas use.
That it is in the second phase of the investment where they will invest about $7.5 billion that will be the liquefied natural gas. I think these were the other considerations.”