GMD, NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu
Despite a pat on its back by the Senate Committee on Gas for implementing key gas infrastructure projects across the country, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Monday disclosed that most of its gas infrastructure projects are been delayed by lack of fund.
According to a statement from the Corporation in Abuja, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu told the Senate Committee who were on an oversight visit to the corporation that less than 50 percent of it’s budget for proposed gas infrastructure projects in the 2012 final year was approved by the National Assembly.
Yakubu said in the statement that was signed by the corporation’s acting General Manager Public Affairs, Mr. Fidel Pepple, that it made a budget request of $1.05 billion in 2012 to facilitate the construction of some gas infrastructure but got a final appropriation of $490 million from the National Assembly which is less than 50 per cent of the requested funding.
He noted that despite the paucity of fund, the corporation was able to implement nine key gas infrastructure projects within the period, adding that eight of such projects have been stalled by lack of fund.
The GMD stated that within the appropriation period, gas infrastructure focus was prioritised around critical pipeline expansions and additions to serve stranded power plants especially along the Escravos Lagos Pipelines (ELPS).
He also explained that creative strategy to accelerate such outstanding projects through a Public Private Partnership arrangement is being developed to augment envisaged funding from the Federal Government.
“Very significant progress was made with these projects leading to gas deliverability improvement to Geregu, Olorunshogo, Omotosho and Sapele power plants.
In total, an addition of about 250mmscf/d of gas has been enabled towards improved power generation over the period as a result of infrastructure development.
Due to funding shortfall, an additional eight projects remain unfunded. These will be the focus for 2013 budget,” Yakubu stated.
Accordingly, Chairman of the Committee who led the delegation, Senator Nkechi Nwaogu expressed satisfaction with the contributions of the Corporation in ensuring adequate gas supply to power plants as well as to industries.
Nwaogu said: “On the whole and in general I think the 2012 budget of the NNPC has been reasonably complied with and implemented. We saw the documentation.
What I saw today and what we saw as a Committee, we are encouraged, we are impressed and we are delighted. What we need to do is to consistently follow-up to ensure that they do not start on a good note and derail partway, that is the function of the National Assembly oversight activities.”