A major shake-up at the NNPC this week had President Buhari's blessings.
President Buhari is still Nigeria’s minister of petroleum resources—a portfolio he retained for himself in a bid to stem the endemic corruption that has become the lot of the nation’s oil sector.
On Tuesday, August 29, 2017, Group Managing Director (GMD) of the NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, appointed and redeployed top executives across the value chain of the NNPC’s operations.
Hours before the shake-up, Baru notified the staff that they should be ready to move to new offices at short notice.
Presidency sources have told Pulse that as soon as Buhari returned to Nigeria, he dispatched correspondence to Baru and minister of state for petroleum resources, Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, to ring the changes.
“The President is keen on sanitizing the NNPC after all the theft the place experienced under past administrations. This week’s shake-up had long been in the pipeline. The NNPC boss was only awaiting directives from Buhari before implementation.
“This is one step toward finally unbundling the NNPC and making it more efficient in order to meet the oil and gas needs of Nigerians”, the presidency source revealed.
Pulse was also told that the President is aware of the shady deals still going on at the NNPC, in spite of his 'best efforts' to rid the upstream and downstream sectors of institutional graft.
A statement announcing the shake-up which was signed by Ndu Ughamadu--Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC said the changes “would not only help to position the Corporation for the challenges ahead but would help fill the gaps created due to statutory retirements of staff”.
The shake-up saw Roland Ewubare, who was MD of the Integrated Data Services Limited, IDSL moved to the National Petroleum Investment Management Services, NAPIMS as the new Group General Manager.
Diepriye Tariah, a former GGM and Senior Technical Assistant to the NNPC GMD took over from Ewubare as MD of IDSL.
Malami Shehu, Executive Director Operations, of the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company, KRPC, was appointed Managing Director of the Port Harcourt Refining Company, PHRC.
Adewale Ladenegan, former MD of the Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company, WRPC moved over to KRPC to assume duties as MD.
Muhammed Abah, until recently, the Executive Director Operations of WRPC succeeded Ladenegan as MD of Warri Refinery.
With the retirement of Alh. Farouk Ahmed as the MD of the Nigerian Products Marketing Company, (NPMC), Umar Ajiya, former GGM in charge of Corporate Planning and Strategy, (CP&S) assumed duties as MD of NPMC.
Bala Wunti, a former General Manager, Downstream, at the GMD’s Office took over as GGM CP&S.
In other changes, Usman Yusuf took over as GGM/STA to the GMD.
Adeyemi Adetunji was confirmed as MD NNPC Retail alongside Dr. Bola Afolabi who will now function as GGM in charge of Research and Development Division of the Corporation.
Mrs. Ahmadu-Katagum was appointed GGM (Shipping) in the Downstream Autonomous Business Unit, ABU, while Kallamu Abdullahi takes over as the GGM in charge of the Renewable Energy Division in the Downstream ABU.
Dr. Shaibu Musa was promoted to resume his role as MD of the NNPC Medical Services Limited while Ibrahim Birma is now GGM in charge of the Corporation’s Audit Division renamed Governance, Risk and Compliance Division.
“We just want an NNPC that doesn’t see the wanton corruption of the past again”, an aide of Mr. Baru told Pulse. “Hopefully, everyone now knows they can no longer sit pretty and that they can be moved at the drop of a hat”.
The NNPC is owned by the Nigerian state. It has been described as the byzantine behemoth of corruption which oversees the mainstay of the nation's economy.
One former GMD of the corporation, Andrew Yakubu, is currently standing trial for concealing $9.8M in a bunker tucked in his nondescript apartment in Nigeria's northern State of Kaduna.
Former petroleum resources minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke whose department oversaw the operations of the NNPC, is being hounded by law enforcement at home and abroad for allegedly stealing Nigeria's crude oil proceeds dry between 2011 and 2015.