We don’t have $218m to remit — NNPC

NNPC headquarters15 July 2014, Lagos – The Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has absolved itself of owing the Federal Government the sum of $218 million oil revenue. 

The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr Andrew Yakubu, said this while fielded questions from journalists at the workshop organised for Energy Reporters in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

The denial followed a directive by Senate to return the said amount to government.

In this regard, Yakubu said the Corporation will continue to engage the National Assembly over the non-remittance of funds to the Federation Account.

“We will continue to talk and see may be by and large they will have a change of mind,” he said.

Recall  that the Senate had on Thursday, during the presentation of the Finance Committee report, chaired by Senator Ahmed Makarfi, asked NNPC to remit to the Federation Account the sum of $218,069 million.

The sum was part of the unremitted $49.8 billion from oil sale proceeds by the NNPC for the removal of fuel subsidy alleged by the former Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi.

The Senate, while deliberating on the report, therefore ordered the Corporation to refund to the Federation Account about $218.069 million being the share from third party financing agreement it did not remit.

But in a swift response, Yakubu said that the Corporation would continue to engage the National Assembly on the allegation and resolutions, as the money in question was spent on operations to avert fuel crisis in the country.

He explained that the Corporation engaged in business ventures that necessitated the spending of the money, saying, “we will collect the report, we will look at it again and we will continue to explain.”

“It is left for them to judge. I am an accused. I cannot be a Judge in my case. Should I be punished for doing the right things?

“We will continue to talk to see may be by and large they will have a change of mind on any wrong doing.

“If you are to go into a profit making venture you must operate within the business environment that will enable you to make that profit. So, if you create a pricing template that does not take into cognizance some of the challenges that are faced, by virtue of the operating environment that is difficult.

“We have had challenges in Arepo, you know very well that any time that line is breached I cannot use that line, I have vessels and I am made to understand that to avert energy crisis in the country I must have strategic storage. I don’t have access to my onshore facilities, I don’t have access to my pipeline, so I have offshore storage facility, that is not reflected in the pricing template and when PPPRA is reconciling with me, they use their template”

“What we are simply saying is that if we have to do this job, this is the real and true situation of things. Senate in their wisdom looked at it and said well if it is not captured in their template, we don’t care. The question is if i did not do it last year, I don’t think I will be here to talk to you. The same Senate will summon me and ask me why there is no fuel, the only person that can do that is a magician.

“It is left for them to judge, I am the accused and not the judge. If I stated clearly that we incurred so much and is verifiable, it is there, scientific but if because of certain parameters fine, we will continue to engage to make these facts clear and let’s know, should I be punished for being the supplier of last resort?.

“Other players, if they are beaten, they stop importation, they come to us. If we decide to withdraw our strategic storage, we know what the consequences are. We cannot withstand any energy crisis in the crisis, it is not the best.


– Vanguard

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