Kachikwu Vs Baru: 'I Approved NNPC Loans Not Contracts' - Osinbajo
Approval for loans is different from approvals for contracts.
The Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo wants Nigerians to understand that the approvals he granted to the NNPC while he was Acting President were for financing arrangements for the Joint Ventures between the NNPC and International Oil Companies
Osinbajo made this clarification in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, in Abuja on Thursday.
He said that the presidential approvals were specifically for financing joint ventures, and they were loans not contracts.
According to the vice president, the law actually provides for those authorisations.
“Approached by reporters after the ground-breaking multi-billion Naira historic Bonny-Bodo road project, in Bonny, Rivers State, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, explained specifically that the approvals he granted to the NNPC while he was Acting President were for financing arrangements for the Joint Ventures between the corporation and IOCs, and not approvals for contracts.
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“These were financing loans, of course, you know what the Joint Ventures are, with the lOCs, like Chevron, that had to procure.
“In some cases, NNPC and their Joint Venture partners have to secure loans and they need authorisation to secure those loans while the President was away.
“The law actually provides for those authorisations. So, I did grant two of them and those were presidential approvals, but they are specifically for financing joint ventures and they are loans not contracts.”
The Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu, had, in a memo leaked to the media, informed President Muhammadu Buhari that the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mr Maikanti Baru, was disrespectful to him.
He also allegedly accused the GMD of awarding contracts worth over 25 billion dollars without approval of the board of the corporation.
However, Baru, had reacted to the allegations by the minister in a statement signed by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Ndu Ughamadu titled “Allegations of Lack of Adherence to Due Process in NNPC Contract Awards.”
Baru stated that the laws of the Commission, “do not require a review or discussion with the Minister of State or the NNPC Board on contractual matters.”
The NNPC boss was also quoted as saying that the 25 billion dollars for financing arrangements between the corporation and IOCs had presidential approval.