Two years ago, precisely, on July 8, 2019, Mallam Mele Kyari mounted the soap box to assume duty as the 19th Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in an elaborate hand-over ceremony.
On that day, the NNPC GMD reeled out set tasks and targets across the tiers of the oil and gas industry from the upstream to gas development, downstream to refineries rehabilitation, reform of the NNPC to a more transparent entity among other subjects.
But beyond the clatters and the glitters, the big question is, how has Kyari performed in the last 24 months of his stewardship as the GMD of Nigeria’s national oil company and by extension the “ operator-In-Chief’’ of the Nigerian Oil & Gas Industry?
The Transparency Card
One of the issues Kyari spoke passionately about during his inauguration was Transparency and Accountability. He emphasized that transparency and accountability would be the cardinal pillars of his management. He promptly followed up his inaugural pronouncement with the launch of his management’s strategic objectives two weeks later. He christened it as Transparency, Accountability and Performance Excellence (TAPE). Since then, he has walked the transparency and accountability talk by opening up the books of the Corporation the way no other management before his has done. The key accomplishments in this regard include:
The publication of the 2018 and 2019 Audited Financial Statements of the Corporation and its 19 subsidiaries registered under the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) 1990 as amended alongside that of the National Petroleum Investment and Management Services (NAPIMS) to provide clarity on Joint Venture finances. The AFS were published in the Corporation’s website for all interested parties to access and scrutinize. This is the first time the Corporation’s AFS were made public in such a manner.
A major revelation in the Audited Financial Statements of the two years so far published is the 99.7% reduction of the Corporation’s loss profile from ₦803bn in 2018 to ₦1.7bn in 2019. Following this trajectory, the Corporation is likely to declare profit in the 2020 AFS which is billed to be released soon.
The Kyari-led management also sustained the Publication of the Corporation’s Monthly Financial & Operations Reports (MFOR) in line with the TAPE vision. NNPC remains the only national oil company that publishes its financial and operations reports monthly globally.
The GMD also led the Corporation to enlist with the Global Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative as an EITI Supporting Company which mandates places NNPC in the group of over 65 extractive companies, state owned enterprises that commit to observing transparency and accountability standards defined by EITI.
Another key achievement of the NNPC under the leadership of Mallam Kyari on the transparency terrain is the successful completion of a controversy-free recruitment exercise for 1,000 young graduate trainees to rejuvenate the Corporation’s talent mix.
Kyari also promised at his inauguration to upscale engagement with stakeholders to ensure that stakeholders are carried along in the Corporation’s operations. He has kept faith with this pledge by devoting time to honour invitations from the relevant committees of the National Assembly, holding periodic engagement sessions with critical stakeholders including the media.