The new Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari, on Monday, explained how he hoped to end petroleum products importation in the country by 2023.
Mr Kyari spoke in Abuja at the valedictory ceremony in honour of the former Group Managing Director, Maikanti Baru, who retired on Sunday after attaining the statutory 60 years of age.
The new helmsman said he would reverse the trend of petroleum products importation by ensuring all the four refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna were rehabilitated.
Mr Kyari said he would also encourage the speedy completion of the Dangote refinery as well as facilitate the establishment of more private refineries in the country.
Mr Kyari took over the reins of management as the 19th GMD of the corporation.
“We must end the trend of fuel importation as an oil producing country,” Mr Kyari said shortly after taking over the instrument of office as the GMD of NNPC.
“We will deliver on the rehabilitation of the four refineries within the life of this administration and support the private sector to build refineries.
“We will support the Dangote refinery to come on stream on schedule. We will transform Nigeria into a net exporter of petroleum products by 2023.”
According to the new NNPC GMD, his management team will galvanise the corporation to pursue the Federal Government’s target of raising crude oil production and reserves to three million barrels per day and 40 billion barrels respectively by 2023.
On transparency and accountability, Mr Kyari said he would strive to uproot corruption from all NNPC operations.
He said the presence of the acting chairman of the anti-graft agency, Ibrahim Magu, at the event was a pointer to ”how much NNPC had changed over the past three years”.
From the old image of a corruption-laden and opaque organisation, Mr Kyari said the NNPC has now entrenched the culture of transparency and accountability in its operations.
“We are going to work with the EFCC to remove every element of discretion from our processes because discretion is one of the greatest enablers of corruption,” he said.
On his commitment to entrench transparency in the operations of the corporation, Mr Kyari acknowledged every Nigerian as a stakeholder in the corporation.
“NNPC will not be opaque. We will be open and transparent to all so that at the end of the day, everyone will be in a position to assess us and say what we have done right or wrong,” he said
“We will do this job with integrity. We’ll never put personal interest above that of the nation or the corporation. I am conscious of the fact that ultimately, I will be accountable to God on every one of my actions.”
He expressed gratitude to his predecessor for the role he played in his appointment.
He said the best way to honour him would be to perform so well and deliver on the job so that he could look back and say he did the right thing.
In his valedictory speech, the former GMD said he did his best to put the corporation on the path of sustainable growth.
He acknowledged the roles played by each of the six Chief Operating Officers and Chief Financial Officer who made up his top management team in the success of his management and wished them the best in their future endeavours.
He urged the new GMD and his management team to focus on staff development, enhance transparency, improve on the delivery of energy security to Nigerians, and do everything to step up crude oil and gas production in the country.
Mr Baru thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the opportunity he gave him to nominate Mr Kyari as his successor, saying this was the first time the NNPC would be having such a smooth transition in its management.