The Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Mele Kyari, has appeared before the joint committee on appropriations in response to a summons by the Senate. This move comes 48 hours after the Senate issued a 24-hour ultimatum to Kyari, who had previously avoided summons by the Senate’s ad-committee investigating the over 11 trillion naira expenditure on turnaround maintenance of refineries between 2010 and 2023.
During the session, Kyari addressed questions from the Senate Committee on appropriations regarding the potential decrease in the pump price of petroleum due to the anticipated functionality of refineries. He clarified that while a reduction might be possible, it is not the primary objective of the refineries.
He buttressed that maintaining the energy security target has fostered the confidence that in 2024, Nigeria will become a net exporter of petroleum products.
The NNPCL boss affirmed that no subsidy is charged to the federation, adding that the NNPC has contributed 4.45 trillion naira as direct revenue into the federation in a combination of taxes, royalties, and dividends and paid 406 billion naira as dividends to Federal Government’s account from July 2023.
According to him, Nigeria does not have credible data for PMS consumption in the country because of the absence of an instrument to measure it.
The Chairman of the Senate Appropriation Committee, Senator Adeola Olamilekan, had on Wednesday, directed Kyari to appear before the committee in 24 hours.
Olamilekan, who asked Kyari to appear in the company of the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), warned that failure to appear undermines the legislature and sabotages the process.
They are required to present the list of all individual companies operating with OML licenses in Nigeria as well as the total production output approved daily.
The lawmaker expressed concerns that some of the revenues required to drive the 2024 budget was attributed to the NNPCL, which according to him, was owned by the Federal Government and responsible to it, and by extension the three arms of government.