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NNPCL Now Free From Institutional Regulations, Buhari Declares …Says Firm To Ensure Energy Security …Assures Of Value In Line With Global Best Practice …Clarifies Stance On Sale Of NOC

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President Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday, officially unveiled the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), and declared that the new entity was henceforth free from institutional regulations.
Buhari, who made this public at the State House Conference Centre, Presidential Villa, Abuja, stated that the oil firm would conduct itself under best international business practices.
He said, “The provisions of PIA (Petroleum Industry Act) 2021, have given the Nigerian petroleum industry a new impetus, with an improved fiscal framework, transparent governance, enhanced regulation, and the creation of a commercially-driven and independent national oil company that will operate without relying on government funding and free from institutional regulations such as the Treasury Single Account (TSA), Bureau of Public Procurement (BPE), and Fiscal Responsibility (FR) Acts.
“It will, of course, conduct itself under the best international business practice in transparency, governance, and commercial viability.”
The president said the government was transforming the petroleum industry to strengthen its capacity and market relevance for current and future global energy priorities.
“By chance of history, I was privileged to lead the creation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation on the July 1, 1977. Forty-Four years later, I was again privileged to sign the Petroleum Industry Act in 2021, heralding the long-awaited reform of our petroleum sector,” he stated.
The president further noted that coincidentally, “I, on July 1, 2022, authorised the transfer of assets from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to its successor company, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, and steered the implementation leading to the unveiling of Africa’s largest national oil company today.
“I, therefore, thank Almighty God for choosing me to consistently play an important role in shaping the destiny of our national oil company from the good to the great.
“NNPC Limited will operate as a commercial, independent, and viable NOC at par with its peers around the world to sustainably deliver value to its over 200million shareholders and the global energy community while adhering to its fundamental corporate values of integrity, excellence, and sustainability.”
He said NNPC Limited was mandated by law to ensure Nigeria’s national energy security is guaranteed to support sustainable growth across other sectors of the economy as it delivers energy to the world.
“It is, therefore, my singular honour and privilege on this historic day of July 19, 2022, to unveil the NNPC Limited, with a focus on becoming a dynamic global energy company of choice to deliver energy for today for tomorrow, for the day days after tomorrow,” Buhari stated.
Buhari also affirmed that the company was mandated by law to ensure that Nigeria’s national energy security was guaranteed.
Thepresident said Africa’s largest National Oil Company (NOC) would also support sustainable growth across other sectors of the economy as it delivers energy to the world.
At the event, which featured a special rendition of the Theme Song “Energy for today, Energy for tomorrow, Energy for Everyone” by an Ensemble, the president recounted how God had used him to consistently play an important role in shaping the destiny of the country’s NOC in the last 45 years.
He expressed optimism that the NNPC Limited would operate without relying on government funding and be free from institutional regulations such as the Treasury Single Account (TSA).
“This is a landmark event for the Nigerian oil industry,” Buhari said.
“Our country places a high premium on creating the right atmosphere that supports investment and growth to boost our economy and continue to play an important role in sustaining global energy requirements.
“We are transforming our petroleum industry, to strengthen its capacity and market relevance for the present and future global energy priorities”.
The president, therefore, assured stakeholders in the industry that Africa’s largest NOC will adhere to its fundamental corporate values of Integrity, Excellence and Sustainability, while operating as a commercial, independent, and viable NOC at par with its peers around the world.
He added that the company would focus on becoming a dynamic global energy company of choice to deliver energy for today, for tomorrow, and for the days after tomorrow.
Buhari thanked the leadership and members of the National Assembly for demonstrating uncommon courage and patriotism in the passage of PIA that culminated in the creation of NNPCL.
The president charged the company to ensure that Nigerians at large get value from its operations in line with global best practices.
He noted that the Petroleum Industry Act 2021 has given an additional impetus for a transparent and profitable energy venture.
The president assured that the NNPC Limited will operate as a commercial, independent and viable NOC at par with its peers around the world, to sustainably deliver value to its over 200 million shareholders and the global energy community, while adhering to its fundamental corporate values of integrity, excellence and sustainability.
With the NNPC transitioned to a fully commercial entity, the Federal Government would, henceforth, halt all forms of funding for projects and sundry purposes as against what was obtained in the last 45 years of the national oil company’s existence.
According to the president, Nigeria places a high premium on creating the right atmosphere that supports investment and growth to boost its economy and continues to play an important role in sustaining global energy requirements.
“We are transforming our petroleum industry, to strengthen its capacity and market relevance for the present and future global energy priorities,” the president stated.
“It will, of course, conduct itself under the best international business practice in transparency, governance and commercial viability.
In his remarks, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, said with the signing of the PIA, which assures international and local oil companies of adequate protection for their investments, the nation’s petroleum industry is no longer rudderless.
‘‘From the onset of this administration, Mr President never concealed his desire to create a more conducive environment for the growth of the oil and gas sector, and addressing legitimate grievances of communities most impacted by extractive industries,” he stated.
“While the country was waiting for the PIA, Nigeria’s oil and gas industry lost about $50billion worth of investments. In fact, between 2015 and 2019, KPMG states that ‘only four per cent of the $70billion investment inflows into Africa’s oil and gas industry came to Nigeria even though the country is the continent’s biggest producer and the largest reserves’.
“We are setting all these woes behind us, and a clear path for the survival and growth of our petroleum industry is now before us,” he said.
Sylva described the unveiling of NNPC Ltd as a new dawn in the quest for the growth and development of the Nigerian oil and gas industry, opening new vintages for partnerships.
He thanked the president for his unparalleled leadership, steadfastness, and unalloyed support for ensuring that the country’s oil and gas industry is on a sound footing.
Also speaking, the Group Chief Executive Officer of NNPC Limited, MeleKyari, announced that the company had adopted a strategic initiative to achieve the mandate of energy security for the country by rolling out a comprehensive expansion plan to grow its fuel retail presence from 547 to over 1,500 outlets within the next six months.
He assured stakeholders and the global energy community that the new company was endowed with the “best human resources one can find anywhere in the industry.
“NNPC Limited is positioned to lead Africa’s gradual transition to new energy by deepening natural gas production to create low carbon activities and positively change the story of energy poverty at home and around the world,” he said.
Meanwhile, President MuhammaduBuhari’s Special Assistant on New and Digital Media, ToluOgunlesi, has dismissed claims that the Federal Government has sold the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL).
Ogunlesi assured that the Federal Government still owns NNPC.
He explained that NNPC was only transitioning from a government parastatal into a commercial liability company.
In a tweet, Ogunlesi wrote: “NNPC has not been ‘SOLD’, please. It is still wholly owned by government. What has happened is a TRANSITIONING from a government ‘parastatal’, into a commercially-run Limited Liability Company (still wholly owned by Government of Nigeria,on behalf of the people of Nigeria), governed by CAMA.”
The event had the Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Femi Gbajabiamila; among other top government dignitaries, in attendance.

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NDLEA Seizes 442 Meth In Smoked Fish At Lagos Airport …Another Suspect Excretes 77 Pellets Of Cocaine

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The operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have intercepted no fewer than 442 parcels of Crystal Methamphetamine concealed in heads of fishes packed in cartons for export to Dubai, the United Arab Emirates through the SAHCO shed of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos State.
The 11.90kg consignment was brought to the SAHCO export shed of the airport on Friday, August 5 by a 32-year-old freight agent, Adekunle Oluwapelumi Paul, from Yagba West Local Government Area of Kogi State.
This was disclosed via a statement issued and made available to The Tide source yesterday by the NDLEA Director, Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi.
Babafemi stated that the suspect was arrested upon the discovery that the seven cartons he presented for export contained parcels of the dangerous drug wrapped with foil paper and concealed in the heads of hundreds of smoked catfish.
The NDLEA spokesman added that another consignment containing 1.45kg cannabis concealed inside granulated melon and crayfish and packed among other food condiments going to Dubai, UAE was also intercepted by the operatives of the anti-drug agency on Saturday, August 6.
He noted that the NDLEA officers arrested the freight agent, Ajisefini Lateef, who presented the consignment for export at the SAHCO shed.
Babafemi said the 39-year-old agent hails from Abeokuta West Local Government Area of Ogun State.
He further stated that the anti-narcotic officers arrested a 50-year-old Mgbeobuna Victor Eberechukwu for ingesting 77 pellets of cocaine at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu.
The NDLEA spokesperson said Eberechukwu was arrested on Saturday, August 6 following his arrival from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia onboard an Ethiopian airline flight.
According to Babafemi, the suspect who hails from Idemili South Local Government Area of Anambra State passed out the 77 wraps of the illicit drug in eight excretions spanning four days.
“The suspect, who hails from Idemili South LGA, Anambra State passed out the 77 wraps of the illicit drug in eight excretions spanning four days,” he said.
Babafemi added that in Kaduna, three suspects: Saifullahi Sani, Salisu Nafi’u and Abdulrazaq Mamman, were arrested in Zaria on Thursday, on 11 August with 1,112,350 tablets of Tramadol (225mg and 100mg) weighing 38.3kg.
He said in Kano, a female drug dealer, Saratu Abdullahi, 28, from Wurno council area of the state was nabbed at Hotoro with 541 blocks of cannabis weighing 245kg.
“In Lagos, NDLEA operatives recovered a total of 1,773.25kg cannabis sativa at Ebutte-Meta and Akala in Mushin areas of the state in separate raid operations between 9th and 10th August.
“At the Tin Can seaport in Lagos, 86 parcels of cannabis indica (Colorado) weighing 43kg were recovered from a 40ft container during a joint examination with Customs and other security agencies.
“The illegal consignment seized on Friday 12th Aug came from Toronto via Montreal, Canada and concealed in two drums inside a Mercedes Benz SUV in the container,” Babafemi stated.
The Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig.-Gen. Mohammed Buba Marwa (rtd), commended the anti-narcotic officers for the arrests and seizures.
Marwa also charged them and their compatriots across the country to always remain steps ahead of the drug cartels.

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NLNG Train 7: TUC Affiliates Mull Strike Over Imposition Of Union On Workers

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A setback appears to be unfolding in the on-going Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Train 7 gas plant construction in Bonny Local Government Area of Rivers State, following the threat by one of the affiliates of Trade Union Congress (TUC), National Association of Plant Operators (NAPO), to proceed on industrial action to press home their displeasure over the imposition of union on workers in the facility.
This is because members of NAPO, the major construction workers in NLNG Train 7 have threatened to organise and mobilise for a total industrial action that would jeopardise and shut down the project over the decision by the management of Deawoo Engineering and Construction Nigeria Limited, a key contracting firm handling the project, to force workers to join a particular union against their own preferred choice.
The National President of NAPO, Comrade Harold Bestowe, gave this indication while addressing journalists in Port Harcourt over the weekend.
Bestowe, an indigene of Bonny, averred that the action of Deawoo management was an aberration to Section 40 of 1999 Constitution, and Article 1, 2, 3, nos 83, 1948 of International Labour Organisation (ILO) Charter, which according to him, allow workers to freely belong to any industrial union of their choice without any form of interference by anybody.
The NAPO boss, therefore, urged the management of Deawoo E and C to respect the views and rights of their workers, and allow them to freely choose the labour unions of their choice, which they feel can represent them very well.
“What we are saying in this regard is that the management cannot determine to workers the union they should be belonging. By so doing, the management has violated Section 40 of 1999 Constitution as well as Article 1, 2, 3, nos 83 of ILO Charter, and that we will resist it”, he stated.
Harold opined that the workers have written to the management that they want to be unionised by NAPO through several letters, and appealed to the management of the lead constructing company in the project to respect the views and rights of the workers.
The Bonny-born unionist used the opportunity to call on various stakeholders in the ongoing NLNG Train 7 project to call to order the management of the giant construction company to respect the laws of the country in other to avoid industrial unrest in the oceanic city.

By: Akujobi Amadi

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We Can’t Feed Everybody, Nwanosike Tells Empowerment Projects’ Beneficiaries

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The Chairman of Ikwerre Local Government Area in Rivers State, Engr Samuel Nwanosike, has urged the people of the area to use what the council has given them to provide food, pay their children’s school fees, change their clothes, and live happily as all their needs cannot be provided for by the government.
Nwanosike made this appeal when he defiled heavy down pour to continue his Back-to-Farm, Back-to-School, and Business Support Empowerment Programme of 80 people at Ward 2, Isiokpo.
According to him, “Today, we are in Ward 2, Isiokpo, in continuation of our Back-to-Farm Programme, Business Support Empowerment, and Back-to-School Programme.
“What we have come to say here today is that this is the farming season, we are peasant farmers, the council has made provision for you to go and support your farming system.
“We can’t feed everybody in Ikwerre Local Government, but if you use what the council has given to you to do the actual farming, few weeks from now, the result will show. We will have enough food in our market, we will have opportunity to pay our children’s school fees, we will have opportunity to change our clothes and live happily”.
Nwanosike pleaded with those who were not empowered to wait for another turn, saying that Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, was the leader of South-South people and believed in a South-South presidential pursuit.
He said, “Government cannot do everything for everybody at the same time. There are those who did not get yesterday, but got today. There are those who did not get yesterday, and today but will get tomorrow. What is important is that you should remain consistent with your party, and know that Chief Nyesom Wike is the leader of the South-South people.
“He is not a betrayer. He agreed with the other governors of the South-South states to say power should go to the South, and he has remained consistent in that pursuit.
“And what we are saying clearly is: if you take Chief Nyesom Wike for granted, Rivers people will take you for granted at the polling units”.
While speaking, the Supervisor for Education, Ikwerre LGA, Hon. Victor Wagor, assured Nwanosike that the people of Ward 2 were 100perrcent loyal to him for always carrying them along.
In their separate speeches, the Councillor representing Ward 2 and Leader of Ikwerre Legislative Assembly, Hon Nwobuisi Chikwe-Tasie; Ward 2 Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Darosha Kinika; Personal Assistant to the Chairman of Ikwerre LGA, Mrs Ethel Kinika; amongst others, thanked Nwanosike for building a 1,000-capacity hall, appointment of over 18 Ward 2 people into his government, and yearly empowerment of the people, while assuring that Ward 2 would always vote for PDP.
On their parts, the member representing Ikwerre/Emuoha Federal Constituency at the National Assembly, Barrister Boniface Emerengwa; and the PDP candidate for Ikwerre Constituency at the Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon. Prince Lemchi Nyeche; commended Nwanosike for always making the people feel the impact of his administration through his human capital development programmes.
Highlight of the event was the defection of an All Progressive Congress (APC) social media influencer in Ward 2, Mr Kelvin Amadi Chinwe, who dumped his party for the PDP.
Speaking at the event, Chinwe begged the leadership of PDP, especially Nwanosike, to forgive and accept him into PDP because he has found light in PDP.
Chinwe was received by the Acting Chairman of PDP in Ikwerre LGA, Hon. Charles Wobodo, and was handed over to the Ward 2 PDP chairman for proper documentation.

By: Nelson Chukwudi

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