Saturday, September 26, 2020



THE INSIDER: Buhari re-appointed NDPHC MD after Osinbajo’s initial objection

THE INSIDER: Buhari re-appointed NDPHC MD after Osinbajo’s initial objection
September 08
08:02 2020

Chiedu Ugbo was reappointed managing director of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) in spite of initial reluctance by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, insiders have told TheCable.


TheCable understands that Ugbo was first appointed in August 2016 on the recommendation of Osinbajo after the unceremonious sack of the previous management led by James Abiodun Olotu.

Osinbajo and Ugbo are pastors of the Redeemed Christian Church of God.

The NDPHC, a limited liability company which owns 10 power generating companies, reports to the vice-president who is the chairman of the board.


On October 29, 2019, Abba Kyari, the late chief of staff to the president, wrote to Osinbajo informing him that Buhari had directed a review of the current management team of NDPHC “to professionalise it”.

Insiders said Osinbajo shortlisted six candidates — conspicuously omitting the name of Ugbo.

He then narrowed down to two candidates — Olotu and Abdullahi Bukar — but said Bukar’s age could limit his capacity, TheCable further learnt.


Osinbajo finally nominated Olotu on the basis of “educational qualifications, experience and courses he attended”.

However, Olotu reportedly gave conditions that were considered unacceptable, including requesting that members of the management team that were sacked along with him in 2016 should be reinstated.


Presidency insiders informed TheCable that Osinbajo, thereafter, recommended the reappointment of Ugbo, saying he was satisfied with the performance of the current management team.


Following Osinbajo’s new recommendation, Buhari renewed Ugbo’s appointment mid-August 2020.

Laolu Akande, spokesman for the vice-president, told TheCable that the vice-president did not send any memo to Buhari nominating Olotu.

He said any such memo was “criminal forgery”.

The VP had been having a running battle with Ugbo over the sale of national independent power plants (NIPPs) owned by the NDPHC.


Osinbajo had wanted some of the plants listed for privatisation to be sold to raise funds for the government but Ugbo has been “too slow”, an industry insider said.

After much pressure from the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Ugbo has finally decided to let go of some of the plants which may now be privatised in 2021 or 2022, according to BPE insiders.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with new facts, including the response of the vice-president’s spokesman.



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