Yona calls it a day: Leaves UK oil company in limbo -Result of abuse of office case brought against him FINNIGAN WA SIMBEYE THIS DAY Dar es Salaam THE former minister for energy and minerals, Daniel Yona, has been forced to resign from his lucrative position as a member of the board of directors of UK-based Dominion Petroleum Limited following his arrest and subsequent prosecution on charges of abuse of public office and occasioning a loss of more than 11.75bn/- in tax revenue to the government. Dominion has reluctantly accepted with immediate effect the resignation as a non-executive director of Mr Daniel Yona, the oil and gas exploration company announced on its website on November 28 this year, two days after the former minister was arraigned in court. The statement added: Mr Yonas resignation follows his arrest in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, on charges of abuse of office occasioning loss of income tax revenue as a result of tax exemptions granted in relation to gold production assaying. The UK company issued the statement in the period when Yona and ex-finance minister Basil Mramba were confined in remand prison, pending their release on bail. Dominion understands that the charges, which Mr Yona has denied, relate to a period during which he was the minister of energy and minerals, before he joined the board of the company. They have nothing to do with his position as a director of Dominion. Dominion has reluctantly accepted his resignation whilst Mr Yona seeks to clear his name, said the company on its website. Dominion was listed on the alternative investment market (AIM) of the London Stock Exchange in December 2006. Stock market analysts say Yonas resignation from the company is in line with regulations governing the LSEs alternative investment market. The company has a portfolio of 16 prospects onshore in Tanzania and says it plans to begin drilling the prospects this year. It has 48,230 square kilometres under four production sharing agreements in Tanzania. These include four licences onshore - Mandawa, Kisangire and Lukuliro (both under the Kisangire PSA) and Selous - and one licence offshore - Block 7. Dominions gross unrisked recoverable resources onshore in Tanzania have been estimated at 1,115 million barrels of oil equivalent (103 million barrels risked), says the company on its website. Off the Tanzanian coast, Dominion operates an exploration licence on the continental slope of the Indian Ocean where there are large exploration targets. Dominion also conducts oil and gas exploration in neighbouring Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) where it operates two exploration licences. Yona and Mramba have been jointly charged with extending a controversial contract with Alex Stewart (Assayers) Government Business Corporation and granting dubious tax exemptions to the gold auditing company. The charges stem from a period between 2002 and 2005, when Mramba served as minister for finance and Yona was minister for energy and minerals in the third phase government of then president Benjamin Mkapa. Mramba, aged 68, and Yona (67) both pleaded not guilty to a total of 13 counts drawn up by the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) in criminal case number 1200 of 2008 at the Kisutu Resident Magistrates Court.