Nigerians Call Buhari’s Integrity To Question As NNPC Squanders N81.41bn On Refineries Without Refining Any Crude In 13 Months
By Seun Adeuyi
Nigerians have questioned the integrity of President Muhammadu Buhari who also doubles as the Minister of Petroleum Resources over the report that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), squandered N81.41bn on refineries between January and August this year without refining a single drop of crude oil.
The agony in their reactions was more violent taking cognizance of the fact that the country just entered into another round of recession with Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contracted by 3.62% in the third quarter of 2020, officially indicating that Nigeria has fallen into recession as the oil sector dipped by 13.89% (year-on-year) in real term.
The Punch Newspaper on Monday reported that Kaduna, Warri and Port Harcourt refineries had been running for the past 13 months without refining any volume of crude oil.
Reacting to the development, Nigerians on twitter, questioned the rationale behind such humongous spending with zero revenue inflow.
Some describe it as outright looting of the nation’s resources, adding that the President must be held accountable since he has arrogated to himself the position of the Minister Petroleum Resources.
Some of the tweets read, Nimrod @GhenhisKhan ”$2.8 billion mission oyel money. The spot can’t be washed away by scrubbing”.
Also reacting, Miyen @miyen_akeke wrote, “Till now I’m of the opinion that the reversal of the sale of the refineries by Late President Umaru Musa Yar’dua was ill advised.
“They should sell all these refineries to private companies. They’ve been an avenue for politicians and some civil servants to loot the treasury”
Efi @EfiGreat added, “Nnpc is a needless venture. we’ll be regionally richer collecting taxes from the private oil companies. there are no overhead costs. but hegemony and power pays “them-them” better.
“The oil and refining industry is their cash cow. They populate their cronies in non existent posts and cash out big time every Month even when it is a known fact that the refineries are long dead”
Also in his tweets, @Boogie57663119 wrote, “A total of N81.41bn was expended on Nigeria’s refineries between January and August this year but the facilities refined no drop of crude oil all through this period, latest data obtained from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation showed.
Moskva @RandomHead2 stated, “Always wonder if they gather all this wasted money (bogus salaries, thefts, things like this, etc), will there really be enough to make significant change elsewhere?
For John Okon-Williams @jhonoguyng “But our government wants to buy refined products from Niger. What happened to buy Nigerian to grow the Naira”.
The Punch in its report said that Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company, Port Harcourt Refining Company and Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company posted cumulative revenue of N 6.54 bn during the 8-month period.
It further reported that according to figures contained in the just released August 2020 report of the NNPC, with a revenue of N 6.54bn and a total expense of N 81.41bn, the facilities ended up with a deficit of N 78.87bn.
“The revenue, expense and deficit of KRPC during the period under review were N6.22bn, N33.61bn and N27.39bn respectively, further analysis of figures from the latest report, as well as those earlier released by the corporation, showed.
“PHRC posted a revenue, expense and deficit of N61m, N25.57bn and N25.51bn respectively from January to August 2020, while WRPC earned revenue of N257m, incurred an expense of N22.23bn and posted a deficit of N21.98bn during the same period.
“For 13 straight months, the facilities had been running without refining any volume of crude oil, the latest data said.
“The data put the volume of crude processed by the facilities from August 2019 to August 2020 at zero metric tonnes.
“With a cumulative plant capacity of 445,000 barrels per day, the facilities posted a capacity utilisation of zero per cent all through the 13-month period.
“However, the volume of crude they recorded as closing stock between August 2019 and August this year was 3.78 million metric tonnes” stated the report.
For several years, Nigeria has been importing the bulk of its refined petroleum products as a result of the inability of its refineries to refine crude oil produced within the country.