*Sylva says to be held accountable for every penny
Lagos — Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Timipre Sylva has said a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC- Nigerian Petroleum Development Company Ltd, NPDC, and others would contribute the money for the rehabilitation of the Port Harcourt refinery.
Sylva made the clarification on a live TV programme last night.
According to him, the federal government does not intend to borrow all fund for the proposed rehabilitation, adding that part of the money will also come from NNPC’s internally generated revenue, including the gederal appropriation, while a fraction will come from the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank).
He also said operations of the refinery would repay the borrowed funds.
“The NNPC is going to spend about $200 million from its internally generating revenue sources, while the Federal appropriation will put in about $800 million and it is already broken down into three parts,” he disclosed.
Sylva added, “The 2020 appropriation will give $350 million, 2021 appropriation will give another $350 million, and 2022 appropriation will give another $100 million, making it all $800 million from appropriation, and then the rest of it will now come from Afreximbank.”
The Minister promised to ensure that every cent of the $1.5 billion is accounted for, adding that Nigerians should hold him responsible in case of any eventuality as regarding the fund.
“I can look at the camera; they (Nigerians) can hold me accountable and hold this government accountable for every dollar, every cent on this project and ensure that we deliver a refinery that works,” the minister said.
The decision of the federal government to rehabilitate the refinery with $1.5 billion had triggered debates in the country, with critics saying such an amount of money would add to the country’s debt profile. They also alleged corruption on the part of the leaders who they said would embezzle the fund.