Mr Dafe Sejebor, the Group General Manager of National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) on Wednesday in Lagos said his organisation had saved the country beween $3 billion and $5 billion.
Sejebor said this at a news briefing immediately after inaugurating a seven-member anti-corruption committee at the NAPIMS headquarters in Lagos.
He said that NAPIMS had recorded a number of achievements since he assumed duty in the organisation two years ago.
”Our achievements are simple. It’s a huge estimate. We were able to bring down the cost of production from $78 per barrel to $23 per barrel and we are charged to further drop it to 17 dollars per barrel for 2018.
”We’ve be been able save about $3billion to $5 billion U.S. dollars since we came in,” he said.
Sejebor said another achievement was that international partners, who were reluctant to invest in the upstream oil and gas, had agreed to a payoff deal that would not tamper with the nation’s income.
”The implication of them not investing is that production continues to drop and facilities decay. That was scary because if you allow that to continue, operations could die in five years.
”We sat down with them and they said we owed in cash call arrears and then we negotiated a way to pay back without tampering with the cash flow coming into the federation account to forestall drop in revenue.
”Also, we turned around our contracting circle from between two and three years to six months,’’ the Group General Manager said.
Commenting on how he had curtailed corruption, Sejebor said the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had policy guidelines, procedures and processes on how to discipline erring staff.
”Such erring staff will be referred to a disciplinary committee. If found wanting, we have our various penalties.
”If it is a financial crime it goes to EFCC, but if it’s a corruption against NNPC itself, it goes to ICPC.”
He said that as at 2015, there were five years accounts that were not prepared and normal governance meetings did not hold.
“But we have been able to clear the backlog. 2016 accounts would be ready by December.
”NAPIMS was able to achieve all these in a short period because all we did was to change our attitude towards work and in the way we carry out operations.
”We worked tirelessly round the clock to clear all backlog of legacy contracts in order to close our books and balance our accounts to show that NNPC has nothing to hide”.
Sejebor urged the media to always double-check negative reports before going to press.
”While trying to drive this change and run an upright establishment, we are bound to make mistakes, please cross-check with us before publishing.
”When a change is being made, you will meet with resistance who will fight you every step of the way.
”When you are dealing with contractors that are not used to losing they will go all out to smear your name, please when the media encounters this please cross-check with us.”
He urged media practitioners to educate themselves on the petroleum policy, which he said, was ”straight forward, written in simple, easy to understand language,” to deter unwarranted allegations.
Earlier, while inaugurating the anti-corruption committee, Sejebor said: ”it’s a milestone to bring corruption to zero level in NAPIMS because we have a zero-tolerance for corruption.
”We came in August 2015 at a time when oil prices crashed and investments came to zero, but today we’ve been able to sit down with our partners, operators to arrest the situation, re-negotiate interest, exit cash-call and the strategy worked.
”Production also dropped to less than a million barrels a day as at that time due to militancy and other issues but as we speak today we’ve been able to resolve issues and as we speak now production is at 2.3 million barrels a day.
”Accountability, transparency should be our watchword. We don’t want to end up like the old NEPA or the old Nitel, we must fight corruption so we don’t eat away our future.
”No matter how many years you have left, one day we will all exit NNPC so my appeal is that we emulate the GMD and support his drive by having zero-tolerance for corruption
”Let us all therefore work together to creatively drive positive initiatives that would help in improving our efficiency as we grapple with turning around our industry while also ensuring that our business remains profitable.”
The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr Maikanti Baru, had directed all NNPC affiliates and strategic business units to inaugurate anti corruption committees.
NAPIMS is the investment management arm of the NNPC that manages upstream operations and is charged with operations of International and indigenous companies among various other responsibilities.
The committee members are the Chairman, Baffaji Tahir, who is also NAPIMS Manager Tax Administration Finance and Accounts.
Other members of the committee, who are also management staff of NAPIMS are, Mrs Evelyn Agwuncha, Mrs Oyebanji Olaniyan, Yusuf Mamman, Mrs Ayodele-Oni Ronke, Aghelegin Joseph, and Udoh Effiong.
In his response, the committee chairman, Baffaji, said the ”success of the committee is basically observing laid-down rules and regulations of the Agency.
”A lot is given to NAPIMS and a lot is expected from NAPIMS. NAPIMS management has done tremendously well too, but with the cooperation of staff and management, the work can be done.
”We are ready to liaise with NAPIMS corporate management and other staff”. (NAN)