Nasir El-Rufai, the governor of Kaduna State, has attributed the flaws still plaguing the oil and gas sector to the Federal Government, despite President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration recently receiving high marks on development indices ranging from security, energy, and infrastructures.
El Rufai asserted that the oil and gas sector’s difficulties could only be solved by complete or comprehensive deregulation, as evidenced by the lessons learned from the telecoms industry.
The governor gave his opinion on the occasion of the seventh edition of KadInvest when he appeared on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Thursday.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company would become commercially viable in July 2022, according to the former minister of the Federal Capital Territory, who insisted that NNPC is Nigeria’s biggest issue and should be privatized.
He said that although NNPC Limited’s Group Chief Executive Officer Mele Kyari might be trying to have an impact, the business has failed and has no right to remain in the industry.
He reminisced, giving the example of Nigerian Telecommunications Limited, which he claimed was at its lowest point before the private sector intervened and completely transformed the telecoms industry.
“I’m giving this example so people won’t think it’s insane when I say the government should get out of the oil and gas business; it isn’t,” he said. It is inappropriate for the Nigerian government to participate in the oil and gas industry. It has failed, so it should just give up and leave. It has been a failure by every metric.
“NNPC cannot claim to have contributed N20,000 to the federal account this year. Taxes fund our way of life. Because of the NNPC’s assertion that oil earnings have been completely siphoned off by subsidies, PPTs, royalties, income taxes, and VAT are what keep this country afloat. It’s hard for me to believe.”
The Governor also emphasized that in order for the nation to address the hydra-headed and long-standing difficulties of the sector, the Federal Government should exit the power sector and privatize it.
He declared that he firmly believes the government ought to sell every piece of oil and gas property. “The government should stop regulating what little electricity there is, hand it over to the private sector, and build the infrastructure; the money will follow. We completed it in the telecoms industry.
He repeated, “Nothing has changed, they are still taking our money, declaring profit that we don’t see the dividends,” in response to questions about the commercialization of the NNPC.
Recall that the NNPC’s name was recently changed to NNPC Limited and that the Federal Government registered the company with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) to register it.