Written by Isiaka Wakili , Dailytrust
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) yesterday failed to defend its last year’s N1.35trillion budget before the Senate.
The Joint Committee of the Senate and House of Representatives on Petroleum (Upstream) flayed the corporation for its inability to explain whether $8.720bn or $9.387bn was appropriated for it in 2011.
General Manager of the National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), Mr. Morrison Fiddi, who appeared on behalf of the NNPC Group Managing Director, Mr. Austen Oniwon, said only $8.722 billion out of the $10.553 requested was approved for the corporation for the year under review.
“For 2011, we requested for $10.55billion, but $8.722 billion was approved. In totality, the performance for 2011 was 88 percent. The security issues in 2011 affected our operations in the Niger Delta region. The security situation was very high, but we are improving and in 2012, we are hoping that it would be good. Also, pipeline vandalization affected our target in 2011, but we were able to achieve 88 percent performance. Hopefully, all these would be addressed in 2012. $8.262 is the actual performance as against $8.722 billion that was approved,” he said.
The chairman of the committee, Senator Emmanuel Paulker (PDP, Bayelsa Central) queried how the corporation came about the $9.387 billion stated on page 17 of the document submitted to the committee.
“You told us in your earlier presentation that you over-performed in certain areas. Yet, the chart you presented here to us does not reflect anything like that. Where are the figures because the ones you have presented to us do not tally at all?”
The Vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Senator Kabiru Marafa (ANPP, Zamfara Central), also queried “What are these tables and graphs for? You are supposed to tell us in details what you are going to earn and how you are going to spend them.”
Responding, Fiddi said, “We are not here to hide anything. We only use the graphs to explain our performance. Give us two more weeks so that we can come up with the details.”
But, the chairman of the committee disagreed, saying, “This is unacceptable. You are not even afraid that you are saying this before the cameras. We are wasting time and money because of you. If Mr. President hears that from you, how do you think he would feel that you are the one delaying the budget?”