The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) says its constant engagement with the NNPC on its operations is based on the agencies mandate to promote corporate ethics, transparency and accountability in the governance of the country’s oil and gas industry.
The NEITI Executive Secretary, Waziri Adio made the clarification in Abuja while on a courtesy visit to the NNPC Group Managing Director, Mr Mele Kyari.
Mr Adio explained that the impression that NEITI report findings is never complete without an attack on NNPC’s operations is a misconception of NEITI’s role as an anticorruption agency in the oil, gas and mining sector.
According to Mr Adio, “We have nothing against the NNPC. We request that it runs an open, transparent and accountable process required to build public trust and citizens’ benefits of the abundant natural resources in the country.”
The Executive Secretary explained that in the last four years the operations of the NNPC has continued to improve towards openness through the regular publication of its financial reports, but however remarked that a lot still needs to be done in the areas of reforms for the NNPC to compare favorably with similar global organizations around the world.
“We are here on this courtesy visit because the man that has just been appointed is a transparency champion and a long ally known to NEITI. We welcome the appointment of Mele Kyari and his new team and we are ready to work with NNPC in the areas of Transparency, Accountability and Good Governance of our natural resources,” Mr Adio stated.
The Executive Secretary advised the new GMD and his team to publish the corporation’s audited financial reports and expand on what has been achieved so far towards making their operations open and accountable.
He reminded the GMD of the need for the NNPC to take up its full responsibility in the implementation of the new EITI standards on Beneficial Ownership disclosure, Commodity trading, Mainstreaming and application of the 2019 EITI global standard approved recently in Paris. On the issue of public disclosure, Mr Adio urged the Corporation to create an FOI portal on its website to enable it respond real time to request by citizens.
Responding, the Group Managing Director Mele Kyari, reaffirmed the commitment of the NNPC under his watch to work closely with NEITI, having mutual respect, partnership and collaboration to enhance transparency and accountability in all its operations. He gave the assurance that the NNPC will give necessary attention to build public trust in the area of transparency, accountability and good governance. Mr Kyari said that “To begin with we will publish the annual audit financial report next week.”
The NEITI Executive Secretary, and the NNPC Group Managing Director, were accompanied to the meeting by their various top management teams.