2013 budget: Senate summons NNPC boss over NPDC $500m revenue

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By Henry Umoru

ABUJA – FOR failure to disclose revenue accruing to one of its subsidiaries, Nigerian Petroleum Development Company, NPDC, Senate, yesterday, summoned the Group Managing Director, Nigeria National Petro-leum Corporation, NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu, to appear before it.

Senate put such revenue that may be earned by NPDC annually at $500 million, which it stressed the NNPC spent.

Speaking, yesterday, when the Director-General Budget Office, Dr. Bright Okogwu, appeared before the Senate Committee on Finance to defend the 2013 budget, Chairman of the Committee, Senator Ahmed Makarfi, warned that NPDC revenue and others might lead to adjustment in the revenue profile for 2013 budget.

Makarfi said: “We are going to invite NNPC to shed further light on this. This is one of the adjustments that will be made to the revenue framework.”

Senate was told at the budget defence that independent producers also paid zero amount for royalties from the marginal field they acquired, just as senators insisted that the royalties could not be zero.

Senate insisted it must be furnished with accruals from the marginal field profit tax.
Meanwhile, Federal Government has increased the amount to be spent for discoveries and exploration from N12 billion to N16 billion in 2013.

At yesterday’s budget defence, efforts by Okogwu to explain why the NPDC revenue was not captured in the 2012 budget framework was turned down by the lawmakers.

According to Okogwu, NNPC has an agreement with Federal Government, which predated the present administration, where it was allowed to spend revenue accruals from NPDC to run its operation.
He said: “The under-standing is that they need money to run the organi-sation since provision was not made for them in the annual budget.”

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