Malam Mele Kyari, Group Managing Director of NNPC

NNPC maintains $12bn withdrawal from NLNG funds is legal

*The fact is that the Federal Government, through the NNPC, is the true owner of the investment (the sum withdrawn). It is accrued to the Federal government, not the Federation Account ─Mele Kyari, Group Managing Director of NNPC

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Defending its position that proceeds from the Dividends Account are Federal Government’s share of revenues from oil shared among the Federal, states and other tiers of government in the country, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has insisted that the $12 billion withdrawn from the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) account was legal.

Malam Mele Kyari, Group Managing Director (GMD) of NNPC, disclosed the state oil firm’s position when he appeared before the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts Thursday, December 3 in Abuja, FCT.

Represented in the House by Umar Ajiya, NNPC Chief Financial Officer, Kyari said the Corporation deducted the amount from the Dividends Account, which is authorised by the Federal Government, represented by the Ministry of Finance, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and NNPC.

The proceeds from the Dividends Account constitute the Federal Government’s share of revenues from oil shared among the Federal, states and other tiers of government, said the NNPC Chief.

He stated: “All withdrawals (from NLNG dividends fund), were based on approved mandates of the relevant authorities.

“As far as NNPC is concerned, investments in NLNG, were done on behalf of the Federal government.

“I was the treasurer of NLNG; so I was aware of the Federal government’s investment in the project.

Kayari added that “the same matter came at the FEC (Federal Executive Council), and was referred to a Committee, headed by the Governor of Kaduna State.

“But the fact is that the Federal Government, through the NNPC, is the true owner of the investment (the sum withdrawn). It is accrued to the Federal government, not the Federation Account.”

Following the submissions, Hon. Wole Oke, Chairman of House Committee on Public Accounts, and members decided to invite Mrs. Zainab Ahmad, Minister for Finance, , CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele, and Ahmed Idris, Accountant-General of the Federation, to clarify NNPC’s claims on the application of NLNG funds.

The issue of the NLNG funds withdrawal by the NNPC has been a subject of investigation by the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts, report said.

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