21 April 2014, Abuja – Ahead of the April 28 probe into the alleged spending of N10billion on chartered jet, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation(NNPC) yesterday said it has been working with the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke on documents required by the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts.
The corporation said it has no plan to thwart the ongoing investigation by the House into the chartered jet.
It also said there is no rift between the Minister and the Group Managing Director of the Corporation, Engr. Andrew Yakubu on the chartered jet.
The NNPC made the clarifications in a statement by its Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, Mr. Ohi Alegbe, against the backdrop of allegations that the Minister of Petroleum Resources was trying to frustrate the probe.
The Minister was yet to respond to queries from the House Committee on Public Accounts as at press time.
But NNPC said neither it nor the Minister has anything to hide.
It expressed confidence that the Minister and NNPC would be vindicated at the end of the investigation by the House.
The statement said: “The Minister of Petroleum Resources and Chairman of NNPC board, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke and the Group Managing Director of the Corporation, Engr. Andrew Yakubu are in harmonious working relationship and dismissed insinuations in some quarters of a phantom frosty relationship between the two key figures in the oil and gas industry. The reports on the rift are a figment of the overheated imagination of the authors.
“The Minister of Petroleum Resources and the NNPC in the last few months have heeded countless number of summons from the National Assembly wondering why the media would go to town with the report that the Petroleum Minister was doing everything to thwart the proposed investigation into the alleged N10billion purportedly expended on the charter of jets by the Corporation.
“The Minister and the Corporation are putting together all the documents that the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts had requested for. At the end of the probe, the Minister and the Corporation would be vindicated.
“The GMD of the Corporation was in London last week for the board meeting of the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG, saying the NNPC would remain focused on its core mandate of guaranteeing energy sufficiency for the country.
“The NNPC dismissed the reports in its entirety and implored media practitioners to adhere to the ethics of journalism which holds facts as sacred and recommends that when in doubt, leave out.
The statement said the Minister of Petroleum Resources has reeled out measures to ensure round-the-clock availability of premium motor spirit across the country.
The statement added: “Under the arrangement, the Minister has approved the allocation of a total volume of 1, 854, 314 metric tonnes of premium motor spirit known as petrol as supplementary volumes for first quarters 2014 and second quarter 2014 June only delivery.
“The supplementary volume for Q1 quota is 750, 000 Mt and the Q2 June only volume is 1, 104, 318.
“Whilst the first quarter 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.
“The Q2 quota also captures a 23 percent upper tolerance in the event of default or slippage into July.
“There are 27 oil marketing companies with proven performance records enlisted in respect of Q1 deliveries. For Q2 (June only), there are 40 marketers with good performance records and whose facilities are functional.
“The idea of June only is to revert to the normal quarterly sequence, i.e. July-September and October-December,’’ he said.
On measures to ensure zero fuel queues, NNPC said: “Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency(PPPRA), the body with the statutory responsibility in this regard 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.”
– The Nation