21 April 2014

Nigeria: No Rift Between Petroleum Minister, GMD - NNPC

The Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has denied any friction in the working relationship between the minister, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, and the corporation's group managing director , Engr. Andrew Yakubu.

A statement by the group general manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, Mr Ohi Alegbe, yesterday described the reports in some quarters of a 'frosty relationship' between the two key figures in the oil and gas industry as a figment of the authors' imagination.

This statement also explained that the minister and the NNPC were putting together all the documents requested by the House of Representatives Committee on Public Account regarding investigations into the alleged N10 billion expended on charter of jets.

Alegbe said the minister and the NNPC had in the last few months heeded countless number of summons from the National Assembly and "wondered why the media would report that the petroleum minister was doing everything to thwart the proposed investigation into the alleged N10 billion purportedly expended on the charter of jets by the Corporation."

The NNPC spokesman asserted that the minister and the Corporation were putting together all the documents that the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts had requested, stressing that at the end of the probe, the minister and the Corporation would be vindicated.

He said the GMD of NNPC was in London last week for the board meeting of the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG), and added that the NNPC would remain focused on its core mandate of guaranteeing energy sufficiency for the country.

Meanwhile, as part of efforts at sanitising the nation's fuel supply and distribution channel, Alegbe disclosed that the minister had approved the allocation of 1, 854, 314 metric tonnes (MT) of petrol as supplementary volumes for first quarter (Q1) 2014 and second quarter (Q2) 2014 (June).

He explained that the supplementary volume for Q1 quota is 750, 000 Mt and the Q2 June only volume is 1, 104, 318, adding that whilst the Q1 supplementary volume is designed to complement the earlier allocation in addition to covering any under delivery by marketers due to unforeseen financial challenges, the Q2 (June only) quota is in consonance with the national consumption pattern of 40 million litres per day.

He stated that the PPPRA, NNPC and its downstream subsidiary the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company (PPMC), as well as the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), were working in concert with other key downstream operators to ensure the realisation of the ministers zero fuel queues aspiration.

Alegbe noted that the PPPRA has inserted a provision in the allocation document which allows for the deduction of equivalent volume from the defaulting marketer's subsequent allocation in event of slippage or default, as part of measures to ensure full compliance in line with the aspiration.

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