British American Tobacco Nigeria Responds to Allegations on Senate Committee Order to Arrest CEO

British American Tobacco Nigeria has officially reacted to the Senate Joint Committee on Customs, Excise and Tariff and Marine Transport’s order to arrest its CEO over the progressing probe of national income loss portrayed against companies who were allegedly involved in the N30 trillion-revenue loss in the maritime sector.
The joint committee had earlier summoned over 60 executives of the companies for questioning, but only 33 were said to have shown up, a situation which informed the decision of the committee requesting the Police to arrest Chief Executives of 30 firms after they neglected to show up before the committee.
According to a statement made availbale to PEARL signed by Mr. Freddy Messanvi, British American Tobacco director of Legal and External Affairs.
In his words, “On the 31st of July, 2017, we received a letter inviting us to appear before the Senate Committee in relation to allegations of involvement in the N30 trillion revenue believed to have been lost within the import and export value chain.

British American Tobacco Nigeria (BATN), as a responsible company, has since been officially communicating with the Senate committee in order to comply with their invitation and regulations to ensure a resolution of the issue through extensive engagements,verification and reconciliation exercises.” Freddy stated.


The statement reads further, “Over the years, British American Tobacco Nigeria has always maintained a healthy relationship with government agencies, including customs. In 2016, Nigerian Customs service commended the British American Tobacco Nigeria for its contributions to Nigeria’s treasury.

We also have a history of ensuring 100% custom duty payments are disbursed on time and in full to secure an incessant flow of required materials. We also ensure we abide by Central Bank of Nigeria and Customs guidelines in relation to import and export processes as required and demanded by the law.”


While acknowledging government’s efforts to nip in the bud gross revenue leaks and showing support for an enabling environment where investments will thrive, BATN said, “We appreciate the efforts of the government to block all revenue leaks and as good corporate citizens we will continue to comply with the Nigerian regulations.


We also intend to work with the government, within the confines of applicable laws, to create an environment where businesses will thrive and harness amicable working relationships through constructive discussions and engagements to ensure Nigeria remains attractive for foreign direct investments in the long run.” The statement concluded.