The Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari says the corporation has no secret accounts that breach the Treasury Single Account (TSA).
Kyari disclosed this when he received the Chairman and members of the Special Presidential Investigative Panel for the Recovery of Public Property in Abuja on Monday,
In a statement issued by Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, the spokesman for the corporation, he said that the NNPC had nothing to hide as it stood to gain a lot by being transparent in all areas of its operation.
He reiterated that NNPC had no secret account, adding “there is no single account NNPC is operating that is unknown to the Federal Government.
” Any account(s) outside the TSA platform are partner accounts which we have obtained due approvals from the government,’’ he noted.
Kyari, who observed that all monies belonging to the corporation were domiciled with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), added that the Corporation’s account managers remained the CBN and the Accountant-General of the Federation.
On the lease renewal fees on Oil Mining Leases (OMLs) 67, 68, and 70 by ExxonMobil, Kyari said the company paid 600 million dollars which were their equity contribution of 40 percent of the Joint Venture Agreement.
According to him, NNPC is to pay the remaining 60 percent but it unnecessary as it is representing the government.
“Ordinarily, NNPC would have contributed the balance of 60 percent of the amount which literally meant government paying monies to itself. There was no need for that,” Kyari said.
Shedding more light on the alleged non-remittances of taxes and royalties by the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), NNPC’s upstream arm, the GMD said there were outstanding payments which arose as a result of the pillage that occurred before 2015.
He, however, assured the Panel that the present administration had made concerted efforts to reconcile every payment due to the Federation on taxes and royalties.
“The only outstanding payment is the 600 million and we have a pre-payment plan with the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) such that by mid-2020, we will have money left to be paid,” he noted.
On alleged non-remittances by some oil companies operating in the country, Kyari said it was the responsibility of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and DPR to collect taxes and royalties from oil companies, including those on Joint Venture (JV) and Production Sharing Contract (PSC) arrangement.
He further noted that the NNPC would provide the necessary support to the agencies concerned in that regard though it had no legal obligation to do so.
“As an enabler organisation, we will support them because we see our roles beyond our immediate responsibility,” he said.
While affirming the Corporation’s commitment to transparency and accountability, Kyari said the Corporation was one of the most accountable public institutions in the country,
‘’This is the only company that publishes its operations and financial reports monthly. I am not aware of any company that does that in the world.
“Every member of our Management shares the vision of Mr. President that Government’s institutions must be accountable to all Nigerians.
“We know that we will gain more by being more transparent. We have nothing to hide,” Kyari told the Panel.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the Presidential Panel, Chief Okoi Obono- Obla said their visit was to seek synergy with the NNPC toward reforming the country and particularly to clear the air on issues relating to the operations of the Corporation.
He expressed the Panel’s satisfaction with NNPC’s “frank and honest responses on the issues raised, describing the Corporation as a very important and transparent national institution with a GMD who had a track record of accountability and transparency in his public career.
“The GMD has a reputation for being an apostle of accountability and transparency. I feel very happy that somebody like him is coming out to clarify the key issues.
Nigerians have been misled, it behooves on every organisation to tell Nigerians the truth to engender transparency in the entire polity,” he said.
By Edith Ike-Eboh