Udoma Udo Udoma
Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma

Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja

The federal government has commended the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Company (NLNG) not only for the huge revenue it has generated for the government in the last 16 years, but also for having 95 per cent Nigerian workforce.

It also applauded NLNG for being currently ranked the fourth largest in the world as well as its capacity to deliver $33 billion revenue to the government in the last 16 years through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as well as the direct payment of $13 billion into the Federation Account, making a total of $46 billion.

The commendation came from the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, in Abuia on Wednesday when the Managing Director of the company, Mr. Babs Omotowa, and his management team paid him a courtesy call.

‘’I am happy to hear that your workforce and management team is 95% Nigerians and NLNG has reduced gas flaring from 65% to 25% and your company is the biggest shipping company in Nigeria having 23 ships, also spending N3 billion in Bonny Community as part of their corporate social responsibility. This is clearly a good example of a successful Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement. We should study and adopt this model,” Udoma said.

On the issue of whether or not NLNG will meet the N400 billion revenue target in 2016 budget due to the current fall in the international oil prices that also led to a drop in the revenue realised by the company, Udoma said ‘’although this development is not surprising, it is not good news as government needs more revenue to reflate our economy for national development.’’

In her remarks, the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed asked when gas flaring end in Nigeria.

Responding, the NLNG chief executive said the company is presently building its seventh plant that would be ready between 2021 and 2022, adding that when completed, the project will either significantly or totally end gas flaring in Nigeria.

Meanwhile, Udoma has commended international donor agencies for their numerous assistance to Nigeria, even as he solicited for more of such assistance.

According to a statement issued by the Director (Information) in the Budget and National Planning Ministry, Mr. Charles Dafe, Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma conveyed government’s appreciation when members of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), led by the director, Mr. Michael Harvey, paid him a courtesy call in his office.