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PROFILE: Mele Kyari — PIB advocate, PENGASSAN comrade — takes charge at NNPC

PROFILE: Mele Kyari — PIB advocate, PENGASSAN comrade — takes charge at NNPC
June 20
10:36 2019

Mele Kyari was named group managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Thursday by President Muhammadu Buhari.

His appointment will take effect from July 8 when Maikanti Baru, the current GMD will retire.

Kyari comes on board as the 19th GMD of the national oil company.

Before his appointment as GMD, he was the group general manager, crude oil marketing division of the NNPC.


Trained as a geologist

Born on January 8, 1965, in Maiduguri, Borno state, he attended Government Community Secondary School, Biu between 1977 and 1982.

He graduated from the University of Maiduguri in 1987 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology.


He had his National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) with the Directorate of Foods, Roads and Rural Infrastructure (DFRRI) between 1987 and 1988 as a well site geologist.

He is not related to Abba Kyari

Although he shares a surname with Abba Kyari, he is not related to the president’s chief of staff.

The new NNPC GMD is of the Kanuri tribe while Abba Kyari is of the Shuwa tribe.


The comrade

Amongst other unionists, Kyari is popularly called ‘Grand Chairman’.

Members of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) often refer to him as a comrade after he was group chairman of NNPC PENGASSAN.

27 years and counting


He joined the NNPC in 1991 as a processing geophysicist with Integrated Data Services Limited (IDSL). In 1998, he was deployed to National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) and worked as an exploration geophysicist.

Since then, he has occupied various positions until the most recent as the group general manager, crude oil marketing division


PIB advocate

Kyari led various teams in developing the petroleum industry bill (PIB) that redefined the government’s take in production sharing contracts with oil companies.


He was the secretary of the FG inter-agency team that coordinated the creation of the current basis of the fiscal and regulatory framework of the PIB.

The bill, which is expected to reform the country’s petroleum industry, has been split into four by the 8th assembly. However, none of the bills has been signed into law.

President Buhari declined assent to the petroleum industry governance bill (PIGB), a section of the bill, for constitutional and legal reasons.

‘Mr Transparency’

He was one of the major people that came up with the NNPC’s commodity trading initiative. This initiative makes it possible for the government to know those who are buying the country’s crude and at what prices, and how much has been made.

He created systems to ensure maximum transparency and accountability of crude oil and gas sales in the industry.

Kyari also led the team that proposed and managed the direct sales and direct purchase (DSDP) arrangement of petroleum products from 2016 till date replacing the crude swap arrangement.

The peacemaker

In 2007, he was appointed to head production sharing contracts management in the crude oil marketing division (COMD).

He helped resolve disputes with international oil companies (IOCs) arising from the various interpretation issues with the PSCs.

He was a member of the team that carried out a review of the 1993 PSC process.

He was a member of the team that reconciled the alleged loss of $48 billion and established the actual status of transactions involving NNPC in 2014.

He led the team that determined the tenure of the Amenam/Kpono carry arrangement.

The Borno-indigene also revised and initiated the process for the redetermination of the applicable fiscal regime for the Addax PSC.

As an acting manager, he ensured the reversion of the tax incentives given to the Akpo PSC.


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