Seven things we now know about Mele Kyari’s seven months in NNPC

Seven things we now know about Mele Kyari’s seven months in NNPC
February 17
10:59 2020

Mele Kyari assumed office as the group managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on July 7, 2019, taking over from Maikanti Baru who held the position for three years.

Upon assuming office, Kyari said his goal was to bring transparency to the operations of the national oil company.

TheCable examines Kyari’s activities since he assumed office.

1. PH Refinery phase one rehabilitation completed

At the valedictory service organised for Baru, Kyari towed the path of his predecessors by promising that all the nation’s refineries will be repaired. For Kyari, the target for achieving this is 2023 and a November 2019 update was that phase one of Port Harcourt refinery rehabilitation project has been completed. This is good news but in a matter of time, it will be clear whether or not he can meet his target. Many analysts would want the refineries privatised rather then repaired, though.

2. NNPC data company now independent

According to Roland Ewubare, chief operating officer of the upstream directorate, Integrated Data Services Limited, the NNPC subsidiary that focuses on seismic data acquisition, processing and storage, can now operate independently without subvention. Market data is very important to analysts and market players. If there is suspicion of interference, its credibility suffers.

3. No fuel scarcity at Christmas

One of the Christmas presents Nigerians were accustomed to in the past was fuel scarcity. It is usually the busiest period of the year for travellers, so any slight shortage is usually catastrophic. In fact, this “benevolent gift” was enjoyed during the Christmas in 2017. However, there was a surplus in 2018 after an initial scare and Kyari kept the flag flying last Christmas. A little crisis and Nigerians would have called for his sack.

4. NNPC expands to the lubricant market

In December 2019, the NNPC deepened its participation in the downstream sector by introducing lubricants for petrol and diesel engines. The variants introduced were: NITRO Diamond, NITRO Gold, NITRO Super 40 & NITRO 2T for petrol engines and NNPC Rhino X and NNPC Rhino HD40 for diesel engines.

5. NLNG’s Train 7 project gets the green light

The final investment decision for the seventh production line of the Nigeria LNG was announced on December 27, 2019. This is coming 12 years after the project was first initiated. When the construction begins, it is estimated that 12,000 jobs will be generated as a result of local involvement in construction, production of cables, welding, valves, scaffolding, furniture, painting and medical. The project is in collaboration with the NNPC, which owns 49 per cent on behalf of the federation.

6. Alternate fuel in the works

According to Timipre Sylva, the minister of state for petroleum resources, there are plans to introduce compressed natural gas as an alternative to premium motor spirit (PMS). It is used in traditional gasoline/internal combustion engine automobiles or specifically manufactured vehicles. If NNPC pulls this through, it will be one of its biggest success stories.

7. Mass expansion in human capital

After a recruitment exercise that began in March 2019, the NNPC recently announced that it had offered 1,050 youths jobs as graduate trainees. In a tweet on Sunday, Kyari described the process as a promise delivered. “We promised Nigerians to conclude the exercise with the utmost dignity and justice. We are pleased to welcome our young colleagues to a world of opportunity to serve excellently in a fulfilling organisation that I served happily for over 28 years. See you at work on May 4,” he tweeted. There have been various comments on social media from people who claimed to have been offered employment. According to the NNPC, the recruitment process is continuous and the next set of people to be hired are experienced hands.


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