Published On: Wed, May 3rd, 2017

Niger Delta: Crisis Looms Over Crude Oil Swap Contract


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…As APC chieftain calls for Kachukwu

An ex-officio of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Honourable Yekini Nabena has condemned the Direct Purchase of Products Program (DSDP) of the federal government.

Nabena said the programme is a fraud and a negation of the peace deal which Vice President Yemi Osibanjo struck with communities in the Niger Delta.

He called for the resignation of senior government officials for not honouring the agreement.

An ex-officio of the APC, Honourable Yekini Nabena has condemned the DSDP initiated by the federal government in the Niger Delta region.

Nabena said the programme is a fraud and a negation of the peace deal which Vice President Osibanjo struck with communities in the Niger Delta.

He therefore called for the resignation of the minister of state for petroleum, Dr Ibe Kachikwu and Dr Maikanti Kachalla Baru, Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) for not honouring the agreement.

He said: “It is a fraud and a negation of the peace deal which Vice President Osibanjo struck with communities in the Niger Delta.”

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo toured the Niger Delta region few weeks back promising reforms in the oil sector, wondering why the NNPC would neglect the Niger Delta region even after the federal government had agreed that oil-producing communities should be given the opportunity to participate in the business of oil.

He appealed to the federal government to prevail on the NNPC to undertake a review of its list of DSDP beneficiaries to include companies owned by indigenes of the Niger Delta, adding that it was the only way to ensure that the prevailing peace in the region is sustained.

Recalls that Osinbajo acknowledged that oil wealth, which accounts for 70 percent of national revenue and 90 percent of foreign exchange earnings has paradoxically become a curse or at best a burden, while speaking in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa state during his tour of the region.

He said: “We must focus to see how the people can see the benefits of oil wealth in the land. We must make sure that our oil-producing communities are hubs for petro-chemical industries, small and large.”

Checks reveals that after Osinbajo’s visit and promises to involve oil-producing communities in the overall business of oil, relative peace returned to the region, thus enhancing Nigeria’s oil production. However, despite the vice president’s promise that the federal government would fulfill its promises to the communities, there appears to be a breach in the implementation of the direct sale of crude oil and DSDP.

In implementing the DSDP, selected overseas refiners, trading companies and indigenous companies are allocated crude supplies in exchange for delivery of an equal value of gasoline and other refined products to the NNPC. The tender for the DSDP contract was announced in January with 128 companies including Niger-Delta indigenous Companies indicating interest and submitted bids according to NNPC.

The NNPC issued the call tenders in January 2017 in an effort to slash the size of the shortfall of refined products in the West-African country seen since private marketers stopped importing fuel especially Gasoline due to scarcity of foreign exchange. The approved companies include, Trafigura, Rainoil, Heyden Petroleum, Oando, Sahara, Total/Total, Matrix, Hyde Energy, MRS Oil Nig, vitol, petrocam Trading, Varo, AA Rano, Moco, Cespa, SIR, Mecuria, Socar and Litasco; with no Niger Delta company in the list. Nabena maintained that this is a fraud and should be canceled in accordance with the peace agreement.

He insisted Niger Delta indigenous companies should be added as recipients in the DSDP program. “We are not asking for anything extraordinary”, he said, adding: “we are only asking for our rights”.

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