• Thursday, July 18, 2024
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Reps summon Sylva, Kyari over poor state of refineries despite $3.7bn contract

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The House of Representatives has summoned Timipre Sylva, minister of state for petroleum, and Mele Kyari, group managing director of Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, to appear before it on April 28.

The duo, the House said, are to explain why the refineries in the country are not refining crude despite a $3.7 billion contract awarded for their rehabilitation.

The House ad-hoc committee investigating the state of refineries in the country issued the summon on Thursday when the two government officials and others for the third time failed to honour an invitation for the investigation.

Also summoned by the committee are the accountant-general of the federation, auditor-general of the federation, budget office of the federation, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Authority, the Port Harcourt Refining Company Limited (PHRC), the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited (KRPC), the Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited (WRPC), National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).

Addressing journalists after the concerned failed to turn up for the investigative hearing, Ganiyu Johnson, chairman of the ad-hoc committee said the lawmakers were aware that the NNPC recently awarded contracts for rehabilitation of refineries to the tune of $3.7 billion.

Read also: Reps ask NNPC to maintain 90m litres daily supply of petrol

According to Johnson, the contracts are said to have been executed, but the refineries are still not working and reasoned that for Kyari, Sylva and others to fail on three occasions to appear before the parliament means they have something to hide.

He threatened to invoke legal, constitutional and parliamentary measures against the officials if they failed again to appear on the new date.

Johnson said, “We are compelled to make this press statement because of the continued refusal and flagrant disregard of the GMD of the NNPC, the minister of state for petroleum resources and the general managers of Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna refineries to the invitations to appear before the committee. We consider this continued refusal and negligence to appear before the committee as disrespect to the leadership of the National Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“The committee is worried that the Port Harcourt Refining Company (PHRC), Warri Refinery and Petrochemicals Company (WRPC) and Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemicals Company (KRPC) had all been operating at gross losses since 2010 before they were finally shut down in 2019.

“As members of the National Assembly and representatives of the people, we have the constitutional duty to name and demand from those responsible to let us know the problems besetting our refineries in order to proffer solutions for a sustainable future and for the benefit of all Nigerians,” said Johnson.