NNPC to Pay N2.1bn Debt Owed NPA This Week

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Eromosele Abiodun

The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru, has stated that all debts owed the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) by the NNPC between 2017 and present, amounting to about N2.1 billion for services rendered to the corporation, are to be settled this week.

This is just as the NPA has stated that henceforth the NNPC would not be charged by the authority for services not offered to the corporation.

Baru stated this when the Managing Director of the NPA, Hadiza Bala-Usman, paid him a courtesy call in Abuja.

While assuring all concerned that the NNPC would subsequently ensure steady and prompt payment for services rendered to it by the authority, Baru said the corporation may be constrained to approach the NPA board for a soft landing on the payment of legacy debts the corporation owes the NPA, some of which have been outstanding for more than 20 years.

Bala-Usman said her visit to the NNPC was borne out of the desire to strengthen the synergy and collaboration between both agencies.

According to her, with the planned dredging of the Escravos and Ejigbo area in Lagos, there was need for the corporation to bury its pipelines deeper to allow for effective dredging activities to enable deeper draft for bigger vessels to access Warri and Lagos in a bid to enhance the supply of petroleum products and other larger vessels coming into the country.

Baru commended NPA for securing the approval of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for the dredging of the Escravos channel, stressing that the feat would go a long way in stimulating economic activities in the area.

While commending the NPA management under Usman for ensuring speedy clearance of petroleum laden vessels to berth, the NNPC GMD described the NPA boss’s style of management as “nationalistic,” adding that the NNPC would remain grateful to the NPA for the existing cordial relationship between them in the service of the country.

The NPA managing director was accompanied on the visit by the Executive Director, Finance and Admin, Mohammed Bello-Koko; Executive Director, Engineering and Technical Services, Prof. Idris Abubakar; the General Managers of Engineering and Abuja Liaison Office, Rufai Mohammed, and Mr. Kabir Edward respectively.