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By NBF News
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Chairman of NEITI, Prof. Humphry Asis Asobia yesterday insisted that the Nigerian National PetroleumCorporation (NNPC) is to blame for the bloated fuel subsidy payments made to oil marketers.

He said the corporation repeatedly failed to follow due process in the fuel subsidy transactions. Prof. Asobie stated this when NEITI appeared before the House adhoc committee on the monitoring of subsidy regime.

He noted that whereas subsidy payments ought to be made from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) through the Petroleum Fund after they had been approved by the accountant-general of the federation on claims of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), NNPC had chosen not to follow the process.

Instead, he said the organisation estimated the subsidy entitlements and deducted amounts 'directly from the domestic crude proceeds before remitting the rest to the Federation Account.' This practice, he emphasised, lacked transparency and due process.

He stressed that NNPC, like other petroleum products importers ought to draw claims for subsidy 'from the PSE after verification of its claims by the PPPRA .'

The NEITI chairman noted that the system of measuring and recording refined product receipts and pipeline movement required major upgrading.

Right now, he said the measurement methods used by PPMC and DPR were not in accordance with 'best practices.'

He also lamented that 'the systems for recording the movement of refined products through the PPMC pipeline system were outdated, paper based and subject to error.'

Asobie called for the revision of monitoring procedures.