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Tinubu inaugurates NEITI governing board, names Akume chair

Tinubu inaugurates NEITI governing board, names Akume chair Tinubu inaugurates NEITI governing board, names Akume chair

President Bola Tinubu has inaugurated the sixth national stakeholders working group for the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).

The working group is known as the governing board of NEITI.

Inaugurating the 15-member committee on Tuesday, Tinubu said members of the board were carefully selected, based on their diverse competencies, skills, knowledge, integrity, and track record of service in their previous assignments.

Represented by George Akume, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF), Tinubu said prudent management of Nigeria’s resources is essential to his administration’s economic agenda and anti-corruption policies.

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Tinubu appointed Akume as the chair of the NEITI board.

Representing the government on the board is Zacch Adedeji, the executive chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), and Mele Kyari, the group chief executive officer (GCEO) of Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, represents the national oil company.

The board also has representatives from the Oil Producers Trade Section (OPTS), and Lagos Chamber of Commerce, with the president of the Miners Association of Nigeria, representing extractive companies, among others.

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Speaking on the board constitution, the president reaffirmed Nigeria’s commitment to the implementation of the principles and standards of the global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in Nigeria.

“The present administration is passionate and remains fully committed to the global EITI, the work of NEITI and the visible impacts which the EITI process has achieved so far in Nigeria,” Tinubu said. 

“Nigeria is, therefore, irrevocably committed to the implementation of EITI in the oil, gas, and mining industries.”

He said NEITI has demonstrated a high degree of competence, integrity and commitment to the values required by the country to achieve economic growth and development in the sector.

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Tinubu added that the efforts were made possible through the availability of reliable information and data needed for national planning and reforms.

“As members of this board, your job is clearly and specifically evolving strategic policy direction and oversight that supports NEITI Management and the Secretariat to continue to implement its activities smoothly without any distractions or interference,” he said. 

“It is also very important that the board supports NEITI to preserve its corporate values, remain focused and committed to its values of transparency and accountability for the benefit of all of us present here today and our future generations.”

AKUME: NEW BOARD TO ADDRESS EITI CONCERNS 

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Addressing the board after the inauguration, Akume said his appointment was a direct result of the federal government’s prompt response to the recent EITI assessment which stressed the urgent need to reconstitute NEITI’s board to avoid sanctions.

He said the new NEITI board would take steps to address any unresolved concerns brought up by the EITI validation report, of which the NEITI secretariat has already prepared a detailed corrective action plan for the board to consider.

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“This Board has the responsibility to understand the issues and provide policy support to the secretariat to successfully implement the plan. Nigeria scored 72 points in that global assessment,” Akume said. 

“And it is my hope that Nigeria will score 100 points at the next validation due in January 2026 under this Board and my chairmanship.”

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He said stakeholders must support the ongoing independent audits of the industry, reforms being driven by the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), reforms in the solid minerals sector, and the proposed amendments of the NEITI Act.

EITI, in November 2023, said Nigeria may be suspended if it fails to meet requirements for validation — including constituting the board — from January 1, 2026.

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