Oil Producing Communities Back Unbundling Of Nnpc, Tackle Critics

Source: thewillnigeria.com

SAN FRANCISCO, March 09, (THEWILL) – Leaders and stakeholders in oil and gas producing communities in the Niger Delta region under the auspices of Niger Delta Oil Communities Agenda (NIDOCA) have thrown their weight behind the unbundling of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) into seven independent companies.

This came against the backdrop of protest by NNPC workers under the aegis of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria and the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers who alleged they were not consulted before the decision was taken and announced.

Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu had on Tuesday announced the unbundling of Corporation for more effective service delivery and profitability.

NIDOCA, in a statement made available to THEWILL on Wednesday, endorsed Kachikwu's unbundling of the corporation, stressing that the laudable initiative of the Minster will ensure efficiency, profitability and transparency in NNPC.

The statement issued by the Secretary-General of the group, Comrade Emmanuel Akpovoka and Director of Publicity, Mr. Clement Komboye, slammed those opposed to the unbundling of NNPC thus: “We were shocked that some few individuals and group (s) have openly rejected the unbundling of NNPC, but we must educate them properly that it is no longer business as usual in NNPC, where over the years NNPC was the ATM machine of a few to the detriment of Nigerians and the country.

“It also appears that those opposed to the unbundling of NNPC by the Minister, may be doing so for personal interest or probably protecting the interests of some unknown persons who are not comfortable with the ongoing transformation in NNPC by the Minister.”

The group observed that majority of Nigerians and major stakeholders in the oil sector have lauded the initiative as one that would further strengthen the Corporation and completely eradicate corruption from the NNPC.

“We are very confident that Dr. Kachikwu, an expert and guru in the Nigerian oil sector is unbundling the NNPC to benefit Nigerians and the country, he should be supported and encouraged to achieve positive results”, they said.

They further pointed out that before President Muhammadu Buhari came into office on May 19, 2015, and subsequently appointed Dr. Kachikwu as Group Managing Director and later Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, there have been series of alleged and reported massive fraud, day-light sharp practices and corruption in NNPC saying; “such dangerous activities must be discouraged and stopped in NNPC, which is why Nigerians have given their total supports to the Federal Government under President Buhari to thoroughly sanitize the NNPC and the country's oil sector.’

“Confidently, we have it on good record that since Kachikwu came on board; the level of corruption had reduced in NNPC. Even officials and staffs of NNPC's subsidiaries are being careful in their dealings not to be caught in the act, a commendable development in NNPC, and we sincerely thank President Muhammadu Buhari for giving the full support to Dr. Kachikwu to eradicate corruption in NNPC.”

“Kachikwu's assignment is to restore decency and transparency to the Nigerian oil sector,” the group stated.

The leaders and stakeholders went on to urge all youths in the Niger Delta region to desist from vandalizing federal government's assets in the region, enjoining them to support the government of Buhari by creating the enabling environment to attract investors and development to the region.

Story by Joe Ogbodu