Reforms currently taking place at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), the country’s state-owned oil company, have been welcomed by no less a person than Mohammed Barkindo, the secretary general of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
The reforms are targeted at changing the fortunes of the corporation for the better, NNPC top executives, especially Mele Kyari, its group managing director, have said repeatedly.
But Barkindo, a Nigerian and a former group managing director of the corporation, said in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, while visiting the NNPC pavilion at the on-going 24th World Energy Congress, that he was glad to see the management of the NNPC pursue the dreams of its founding fathers despite the challenges of contraction in investment that have affected the global energy industry.
“I am glad that you continue to match on with your projects despite the downturn in the Industry. We have seen the Industry globally suffered in terms of contraction in investment which affected capacity. You have not only been able to stay on course, but you also continue with these projects which are critical for the development of the corporation and the Industry in Nigeria,” is quoted to have said in a statement signed by Ndu Ughamadu, group general manager, group public affairs division of the corporation.
According to Ughamadu, Barkindo, while affirming confidence in the new leadership of the corporation, said that the competences of Timipreye Sylva, the newly appointed minister of state for petroleum, and Kyari, the NNPC GMD, were a good match towards bringing the much-needed direction and development in the continent’s oil and gas industry.
“I know both Timipreye Sylva as a friend and Mele Kyari as a colleague for a very long time. I had worked with both and I know that if they work together, they will make a good team that will provide the leadership that the corporation and the Industry require,” the statement quotes Barkindo to have added.
According to Ughamadu’s statement, Barkindo particularly expressed his delight with Kyari’s transparency and accountability drive, as enunciated in his Transparency, Accountability Performance Excellence (TAPE) vision, describing it as indispensable key elements towards gaining investor confidence.
“To lead such a sensitive and capital-intensive industry like oil and gas, you must have transparency and accountability as one of your core principles in order to drive change. I am glad I know Mele Kyari for a very long time. He is a very capable and straightforward individual with high level of integrity even as a very junior officer. So, he has a track record. I remain confident that together with his team, and with the support of government, he will accomplish the task”.
Adetunji Adeyemi, NNPC’s chief operating officer, downstream, who represented Kyari at the triennial conference, had earlier briefed Barkindo, shedding more light on strategic projects of the corporation, assuring Barkindo of the commitment of the leadership of the corporation to deliver on their mandate.