Why We Want 396.33 Million Dollars Spent on 3 Refineries in 4 Years Investigated – Hon. Ifeanyi Momah

NNPC has highest operating costs worldwide,

BY OBUTE JAMES

The House Committee Chairman on Federal Capital Territory, Abuja Judiciary, Hon (Barr.) Ifeanyi Chudy Momah said 396.33 million dollars allegedly spent in four years on ‘Turn Around Maintenance of the Nigerian’s 3 refineries needs to be investigated because the refineries are performing below 6% of their capacity.

In an interview with THE LEGISLATURE, Hon. Momah who is representing Ihiala Federal Constituency of Anambra State said his decision to seek for the investigation of how such amount of money will be spent on the nation’s 3 refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna without a meaningful impact is not about himself or his constituents alone but about the future of all Nigerians.

“It is unfortunate that a lot has been expended on ‘Turn Around Maintenance’ of the nation’s 3 refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna, yet their performance is less than 9 percent of our daily consumption requirement. What this means is that out of 33.7 million litres of PMS that Nigerians consume daily against the 51.6 million litres we need daily, about 91% of the petroleum products are imported into this country. This accounts for the high-rise in price of petroleum products in Nigeria.

“I think we need holistic revamping starting from the refineries to make it more efficient. Moreover, it is not about me or the motion I moved recently, it all started with Mr President (Buhari) who in October 2016 introduced initiative to increase the production capacity of our local refineries. It is in view of this that we decided to do the needful that will bring about the needed growth and development,” he said.

“Remember an assertion by Nigeria National Resource Centre, NNRC which implements the Natural Resources Charter, NRC in Nigeria. NNRC in its report noted that 396.33 million dollars was spent between 2013 and 2017 to carry out repair work under the ‘Turn Around Maintenance’ scheme on its three decrepit refineries at Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna.

“NRC is a set of principles intended for use by government, societies, and the International Community to determine how best to manage natural resources wealth for the benefit of current and future generation of citizens.

“In the report NNPC also spent N276.872 billion on operating expenses of the refineries between 2015 and 2018 as well as 36 billion dollars on importation of petroleum products between 2013 and 2017.

“These three refineries contribute less than 10% annually to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product, GDP and they are also among the league of refineries with the highest operating costs worldwide, as their consolidated capacity utilization dropped to 6.1% at the end pf September, 2017.”

Hon. Momah said the strategic goal of establishing local refining facilities and its associated supply chain as a socio-economic game-changer that will result in national development has continued to elude the country’s oil and gas industry.

He said the three major refineries with installed capacity to refine 445, 000 barrel of oil, enough for domestic consumption and export but this objective has not been realized owing to combination of factors including corruption and inefficiency in the running of the refineries which regular ‘Turn Around Maintenance’ have been mismanaged.

He said “going by the reckoning of the NNRC the 36 billion the country spent on importation of petroleum products in the last four years could have built four brand new refineries of similar capacity with the same 650, 000 barrel per day processing capacity as the refinery that Dangote Group is currently building in Lagos.

“It is in view of this that the House in its resolution called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to consider divesting a certain percentage of its shareholdings in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna refineries to competent investors under transparent and fair bidding process.

“Mandated its Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream) to conduct an investigative hearing on the processes of the ‘Turn Around Maintenance’ at the Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna refineries by the NNPC between 2013 and date and report back in 8 weeks for further legislative actions.”

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