By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
A group under the auspices of Coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) have commended President Bola Tinubu for reappointing Engineer Mele Kyari as the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL).
According to the CSOs, the appointment is not only well deserved and reward for hard work, but also necessary to ensure that the ongoing reforms are carried out to the later.
In a press statement by the Chairman and Secretary of the CSOs, Comrade Ephraim Jonathan and Comrade Yusuf Ibrahim Kudan said,”By the reappointment of Kyari, President Tinubu has demonstrated a high sense of focus and commitment to uninterrupted and smooth operations of the national oil industry”.
While acknowledging Kyari’s reform programmes and the major panacea for enhanced transparency and efficiency in the operations of NNPCL, the group said, “the idea of setting up of a new trading subsidiary, establishment of a new crude oil marketing division, and the implementation of a new performance management system ,which enhances accountability in the Nigerian oil and gas sector was a magic wand”. The statement added, “When Mele Kyari assumed duty as the Group Managing Director of the now-defunct Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on July 7, 2019, it was at a critical period not only in the life of the corporation but for the entire Nigerian oil and gas sector as well as the national economy.
“With his appointment in 2021 by Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari as chief executive officer of the Nigerian National Oil Company Limited (NNPCL), the successor company to the NNPC under the new dispensation ushered in by the petroleum industry act, which came into force in 2021, the TAPE became the standard for steering the new company forward in a global economy still reeling from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, which devastated the world in 2020 and 2021.
“It has become obvious that since he was appointed, the performance of the NNPCL has been impressive with situations, which appeared insurmountable, turned around.”
Stating further about on-going reforms and company’s growth from a loss-making one into a profit-making commercial entity, the group singled out the efforts at checkmating crude oil theft and illegal refineries as significant spike that help to boost daily oil production.
It added that Nigeria has regained its position as the largest crude oil producer in Africa, ahead of Algeria’s 1.021mb/d and Angola’s 1.088mb/d in November 2022. “It gladdens the heart to note that NNPCL posted its second consecutive year of ‘profit’ announcing N674.1 billion in the 2021 financial period and growing it from N287 billion in 2020. The figure represented an increase of N387 billion or 134.8% when compared to the previous N287 billion recorded in 2020.
“We have also noticed that the lingering fuel scarcity characterised by long queues at filling station is gradually becoming history. And with the availability of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) as a feat Nigerians will remember Kyari led management for.
“Worthy of note is the good news that $2.8bn Ajaokuta–Kaduna–Kano (AKK) gas pipeline project will be inaugurated December.The AKK pipeline is a 614km-long pipeline to transport natural gas from southern Nigeria to central Nigeria.
“The most impressive accomplishments of Kyari’s stewardship at NNPCL is the commencement of commercial oil to exploration in the Northern part of Nigeria.The Kolmani Oil Field, estimated to have a reserve of about one billion barrels of crude oil, OPL 809 and 810, lie in the Gongola Basin of the Upper Benue Trough, straddling Bauchi and Gombe states.
“The laudable Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline (NMGP),which is an initiative of the federal government of Nigeria and the Kingdom of Morocco, is a 5,600 kilometers gas pipeline project traversing 13 African countries namely: Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Gambia, Senegal and Mauritania to Morocco is indeed a great feat”. The statement said.