Kaduna State governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, on Thursday, declared that the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, is Nigeria’s biggest problem and should be privatised and not commercialised.
el-Rufai, who spoke on Channels Television’s breakfast show, ‘Sunrise Daily’ on the commencement of seventh edition of Kaduna Economic and Investment Summit (KADINVEST 7) in Kaduna, said the Federal Government has failed in the oil and gas business.
Governor el-Rufai argued that nothing has changed with the commercialisation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company in July 2022.
The governor, who was commenting on the theme of this year’s KADINVEST 7, ‘Building a Resilient Economy’, noted that the sectors doing well in the country like entertainment, telecoms, fintech and others have no government’s involvement.
However, el-Rufai said the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of NNPC Limited, Mele Kyari, was trying his best, but the company has failed and has no business being in the oil sector.
The governor said: “I am giving this example so that when I say government should get out of oil and gas, people should not think it is crazy; it is not. There is no reason why the Nigerian Government should still be in the oil and gas sector. It should just get out, it has failed. By every measure it has failed.
“This year, NNPC has not brought N20,000 to the Federation Account. We are living on taxes. It is PPTs, royalties, income tax and VAT that is keeping this country going because NNPC claims that subsidy has taken all the oil revenues. I don’t believe it
“Nothing has changed, it’s just a change in name with ‘Limited’ at the end. Nothing has changed, they are still taking our money, declaring profit that we don’t see the dividends.”
el-Rufai also said the Federal Government should hand off the power sector and privatise it for the country to overcome the hydra-headed and decades-long challenges of the sector.
“So, the government should sell everything in oil and gas sector. The government should get out of everything that is left of electricity, leave it to the private sector, create the environment, the money will come. We did it in the telecoms sector,” he added.