By Gift Chapi Odekina
Folowing the recent increase in price of petroleum products, the House of Representatives on Thursday demanded
details of the N66.6 billion budgeted for rehabilitation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation NNPC’s refineries in the 2021
Chairman of the House Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream)
Rep.Musa Sariki Adar and other committee members made the request during a review of the 2020 budget and defence of the 2021 budget of the corporation.
At the budget session, the Group Managing Director GMD of NNPC Engraved. Mele Kyari had told the lawmakers that the corporation had undergone a lot of transformation in its operations.
He had told the lawmakers that the agency publishes it’s audited
accounts on yearly basis and also publishes it’s transactions at the
federation account in a website.
According to him, in on April 2021,the corporation hit a 2.49 million barrel of crude oil production per day, a feat he added could not be achieved in the past ten years.
Speaking on the budget of the agency, he said that N50 billion that was budgeted in the 2020 budget had been significantly reduced due to
the coronavirus disease.
On rehabilitation of refineries,he said that the agency deliberately shut down the facilities of the refineries because it was practically impossible to run them at full installed capacities.
He added that the pipelines must have up to 230 to 240 barrels of oil per day for the refineries to operate otherwise its operations runs at
However, not satisfied with his explanation, a member of the House
Committee Hon. Osai N. Ossai said that there is no proper account of
what the agency had spent on fixing the refineries.
He further asked why the agency had not allowed its facilities to be oversighted by the House over the year as provided for in Sec 88 and 89 of the 1999 Constitution.
Other lawmakers also queried why the agency’s helmsman glossed over
the commissioning of a modular refinery in Imo State whereas the nation is jolted by this development in the oil sector.
The NNPC boss however assured the committee members that they are
working assiduously to fix the refineries starting with the Port
Harcourt refinery, then Warri and subsequently Kaduna refineries.