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Govs using FAAC stand-off as excuse not to pay salaries— NNPC

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Says they’re attempting to incite Nigerians against it

By Michael Eboh

ABUJA—Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, yesterday, accused state governors of using the stand-off emanating from the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee, FAAC, meeting as an excuse not to pay salaries to workers.

NNPC also described the governors’ declaration as an attempt to incite Nigerians against it.

The corporation in a statement by its Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, also debunked allegations that it was diverting proceeds of crude oil sales to another account instead of the Federation Account in the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.

NNPC Headquarters, Abuja.

Ughamadu described the actions of the governors as unfortunate, especially as it was the same governors that approved some of its measures to entrench transparency in its operations.

The statement read:  “The governors’ (under the umbrella of the Governors’ Forum) antics of  rushing  to the press at the earliest opportunity of FAAC meeting is most unfortunate, using this as an unfortunate excuse not to pay salaries.

“It is a ploy to set the public against the NNPC. Yet, it is  the same Governors’ Forum that approved the cash call exit to restore investors’ confidence and boost crude oil production, thereby generating more revenue for them to share.  Again, all crude oil sales proceeds go straight into the CBN and not to the NNPC accounts.”

NNPC had on Saturday night, disclosed that it would be meeting with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to address the issue of remittances to the Federation Account that caused the suspension of the Federation Account Allocation Committee, FAAC, meeting.

In a text message in Abuja, Ughamadu had stated that the decision to address the issue with the Vice President was due to the stance of the state commissioners of finance.

He said: “The issue will be resolved with the Vice President who chairs the National Economic Council, NEC.”

The NNPC had on Thursday, accused state governors of making unnecessary demands, stating that the governors were asking the corporation to remit additional N40 billion to FAAC.

Ughamadu had disclosed that the fresh demand was in breach of the agreement it had with the governors.

According to him, the NNPC had agreed with the governors to make a monthly remittance of N112 billion to the FAAC, but the NNPC was able to exceed the amount by N35 billion, bringing its remittance in June 2018 to N147 billion.

Ughamadu further described the demands of the governors as unfortunate, especially as the NNPC had to secure the extra funds from amount meant for meeting its Joint Venture cash call obligations.

He said:  “The NNPC N147 billion June remittance to the Federation Accounts and Allocation Committee, FAAC, is in line with the terms of agreement it had with governors on the matter.”

“The agreement NNPC had with the governors was that the corporation would make a monthly remittance of N112 billion to FAAC subject to sufficient funds from sales of domestic crude oil allocation for the corresponding month after meeting cash call obligations on JVs, deductions of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS)-cost under recovery and pipeline maintenance.”

“NNPC was able to surpass the terms of agreement with the governors on the monthly remittance for the month of June by N35 billion, having taken a cue from their postures by taking from the sum meant for settling cash call obligations.

“The corporation regretted the Governors’ additional request of N40 billion. It is unfortunate, given the fact that NNPC is set to exit the cash call phenomenon.”

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