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NNPC Boss, Maikanti Baru In 25Billion Dollars Scandal

The Group Managing Director of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru is in hot soup. The Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu has revealed how the NNPC boss awarded $25billion contracts without due process.

The minister in a petition to President Muhammadu Buhari disclosed that his ministry and the board of NNPC were never consulted by the NNPC boss before the contracts were awarded.

“Some of these contracts include the Crude Term contracts, valued at over $10bn; the DSDP contracts, valued at over $5bn; the AKK pipeline contract, valued at about $3bn; various financing allocation funding contracts with the NOCs, valued at over $3bn; various NPDC production service contracts, valued at over $3bn to $4bn.”

“The legal and procedural requirement is that all contracts above $20m would need to be reviewed and approved by the board of NNPC. Mr. President, in over one year of Mr Baru’s tenure, no contract has been run through the board.”

‘‘As in many cases of things that happen in NNPC these days, I learn of transactions only through publications in the media.”

Besides, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu equally made other shocking revelations about the NNPC boss in the petition to the president: “Mr. President, yesterday (August 29, 2017) like many other Nigerians, l resumed work and confronted with many publications of massive changes within the NNPC.”

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“Like the previous reorganisations and ‘repostings’ done since Dr. Baru resumed as GMD, I was never given the opportunity before the announcements to discuss these appointments. This is so despite being the Minister of State, Petroleum, and Chairman, NNPC Board.”

“The board of NNPC, which you appointed and which has met every month since its inauguration, and which, by the NNPC Act, is meant to review these planned appointments and postings, was never briefed. Members of the board learnt of these appointments from the pages of social media and the press release of NNPC.”

“It is in the spirit of service and absolute belief in the your leadership and integrity that after one year of tolerating the disrespectful and humiliating conduct by Baru, I decided to bring the GMD’s acts to the President.”

“I have been on a race to stabilise and move the industry to the next phase, the parastatals in the ministry and all CEOs at these parastatals must be aligned with the policy drive at the supervising ministry to allow the sector register the growth that had eluded it for many years.”

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“In anticipation of vacancies that would arise from retiring senior executives of the NNPC, I wrote to the GMD a letter requesting that we both have prior review of the proposed appointments. Not only did Baru not give my letter the courtesy of a reply, he proceeded to announce the appointments without consultation on board concurrence.”

“Mr. President, please note that there is a board service committee, whose function is to review potential appointments and termination of senior staff prior to implementation. This committee was also not consulted.”

“The open administration, which I introduced, had been completely eroded, as NNPC staff members are afraid of contacting the minister for fear of being punished, sidelined in appointments and targeted. The effect of the attitude of the GMD and the sidelining of the board is that there is a fear culture in the NNPC.”

“We save NNPC and the oil industry from collapse arising from the above non-transparent practices and empower the board you inaugurated to do the needful. That you save the office of the minister of state from further humiliation and disrespect by compelling all parastatals to submit to oversight regulatory mandate and proper supervision which I am supposed to manage on your behalf.”

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“You kindly instruct the GMD to effectively leave the NNPC to run as a proper institution and report out along due process lines to the board and that Your Excellency instruct that all reviews be done with the minister of state prior to your decision.”

“That to set right examples, you approve that the recently announced reorganisation changes be suspended until the GMD, myself and the board have made relevant input to same. This will send a clear signal of due process and transparency.”

“That Your Excellency encourage joint presentation meeting between head of parastatals and the minister of state to you as to encourage a culture of working together and implant discipline in the hierarchy.”