Refund of N41.9bn: NNPC to dialogue with lawmakers



18 July 2014, Abuja – Abuja – Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said it would continue to dialogue with the National Assembly over its directive that the corporation should refund 262 million dollar to the Federation Account.

The naira equivalent of the amount is N41.9 billion.

This is contained in a statement signed by Mr Ohi Alegbe, its Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, NNPC,in Abuja on Friday.

It explained that the NNPC Group Managing Director (GMD), Mr Andrew Yakubu, stated this at a capacity building workshop organised for media practitioners in Uyo.

The statement said that the money was the sum the corporation could expended on holding strategic reserves and maintenance of pipelines.

It added that the Senate Committee on Finance that probed the allegation of non-remittance of 49.8 billion dollar said NNPC could not satisfactorily defend it.

The statement stated that the controversy over those expenditures arose from the burden heaped on NNPC as a petroleum products supplier of last resort.

It, however, said there was no adequate provision for funding from the Petroleum Support Fund as the extra expenditures on holding offshore strategic reserves.

The statement said this was expected to guard against supply shocks in case of emergency were not captured in the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) template.

“What we are simply saying is that if we have to do this job, then this is the real and true situation of doing it.

“Let us know if I should be punished for being the supplier of last resort because if we decide to withdraw the strategic storage, we cannot withstand energy crisis in this country,” it said.

The statement stated that the senate in its wisdom looked at it and said if the cost of holding the strategic storage was not captured in the PPPRA template it could not be paid for.

“If we don’t do it and if I did not do it last year, I don’t think I will be here talking to you,’’ the statement quoted Yakubu as saying.

“The same Senate will also summon me and ask me why there are no petroleum products.
The only person who can function as a supplier of last resort without holding strategic reserve is a magician.

“It is left for them to judge, I cannot judge myself and if we state it clearly that we incurred this much and it is verifiable because it is there.

“We will then continue to engage and explain to make this fact clear,’’ the statement further quoted the GMD as saying.

– Vanguard

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