In a much-anticipated appearance before the joint committee on appropriations, Mele Kyari, the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, responded to questions regarding the potential drop in the pump price of petroleum following the expected functionality of refineries.
The Senate had issued a 24-hour ultimatum for Kyari to appear, expressing concern over his previous non-compliance with summonses related to the probe of over 11 trillion naira expenditure on the turnaround maintenance of refineries between 2010 and 2023.
During the session, Kyari clarified his stance on the impact of refinery functionality on petrol prices, stating that while a reduction might be possible, it is not the primary objective of the refineries. Emphasizing the commitment to energy security, he projected Nigeria becoming a net exporter of petroleum products by 2024.
Kyari asserted that the NNPC does not impose a subsidy on the federation, highlighting the company’s significant contributions. He revealed that the NNPC injected 4.45 trillion naira as direct revenue into the federation through taxes, royalties, and dividends.
Moreover, the NNPC paid 406 billion naira as dividends to the Federal Government’s account since July 2023.
Addressing concerns about credible data for petrol consumption, Kyari cited the absence of instruments for measurement.
This comes amid a directive from the Chairman of the Senate Appropriation Committee, Senator Adeola Olamilekan, for Kyari to appear promptly, warning that failure to do so undermines legislative processes.
The committee also requested Kyari and the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission to provide a list of companies operating with OML licenses and their daily production output.
Senator Olamilekan underscored the importance of these details for driving the 2024 budget, expressing concern over the NNPC’s role and accountability to the Federal Government and the three arms of government.
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