NNPC is corrupt, inefficient -Minister

Source: pointblanknews.com

Austin Oniwon, NNPC GMD
The Minister for Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke has described the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC as corrupt, lacking in transparency and inefficient in all its dealings.

Madueke's damning assessment of the NNPC at the weekend is coming months after former Minister for State, Finance, Mr. Remi Babalola described the corporation as financially broke. Babalola was forced to resign after exposing the state of the NNPC while Finance Minister, Olusegun Aganga painstakingly denied the report.

Represented by the Group Executive Director, Exploration and Production, Mr Andrew Yakubu, the Minister solicited the support of all stakeholders to assist in entrenching transparency and discipline in their business dealings with NNPC officials.

She said, “it is our hope that all stakeholders and players in the industry will extend a hand of partnership in entrenching the transparent and efficient ways in which we now desire to do business by leveraging on the laws of the land. This will no doubt ensure accountability in the management of investments across the value chain.”

The Minister for Petroleum said the ongoing reform in the oil and gas sector was to sanitise the corporation as well as the industry. “In order to entrench transparency and accountability in the sector, the government had embarked on critical reform in the sector,” she said.

Meanwhile, reports by independent auditors had earlier indicted NNPC of using its unique trading position to make profit in the country's crude oil sale payments at the expense of the government between 2006 and 2008 which the audit covered.

The audit was conducted by British accountants, Hart Group and Nigerian firm, S.S Afemikhe & co and approved by the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).

The report recommended that the NNPC should be autonomous. “Restructuring of the NNPC should ensure arm's length dealing between the NNPC and the federation,” the report said. It also said the NNPC is taking advantage of its position as both buyer and agent of seller (the government) to make profit at the expense of the federation.

The NEITI report suggested that the NNPC is a corrupt organisation that needs to be autonomous of government interference and return to profitability without taking undue advantage in the industry.