By Andy Chukwu
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has sealed up an Offshore Safety Training Centre along Opete Road in Warri, Delta State over alleged fraudulent issuance of International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) approved certificates to unsuspecting Nigerians and foreigners working in the Nigeria oil and gas Industry.
The company (names withheld) allegedly operates the offshore safety training centers at Warri and Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Some of the forged/fraudulent ‘IADC Approved’ certificates being issued by the said company include the Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training (BOSIET), Helicopter Underwater Escape Training (HUET) and Survival at Sea( SAS).
The BOSIET, HUET and SAS certificates were mandatory safety requirements for travelling to Offshore and swamp locations in the Nigeria oil and gas industry.
It was further alleged that over the years, the company have issued thousands of these fraudulent ‘IADC Approved’ BOSIET, HUET, SAS certificates to innocent Nigerians and Foreigners, and allegedly obtaining money running into millions of Naira from unsuspecting oil and gas workers under false pretence by claiming that the certificates and courses were accredited by the IADC.
It was further alleged that thousands of these fraudulent certificates have been issued to innocent Nigerians and foreigners by the company, thereby compromising the safety of personnel working in the Nigeria oil and gas Industry as well as putting the lives of innocent Nigerians and foreigners in grave danger.
Mark Denkowski, the IADC Vice President (Accreditation Operations), alleged that the company was not an accredited IADC training provider, adding that the IADC does not currently have a BOSIET and HUET accreditation program.
Denkowski said the use of the IADC logo on training certificates by the company was an abuse of the IADC logo.
Sources within the EFCC informed newsmen that the commission was petitioned by a concerned Nigerian over the alleged fraudulent activities of the company and it has commenced an investigation into the matter.
The source added that the EFCC has raided the company premises and allegedly uncovered several forged ‘IADC Approved’ certificates.
The anti-graft agency said the training centre has been sealed by the Commission in order to prevent the public from being continuously defrauded, adding that directors of the company were currently being questioned by the Commission.