NNPC Refutes Claims of N3.3tn Subsidy Inflation Under Buhari Administration

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) has firmly denied allegations that it inflated the subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol, by N3.3 trillion during the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

In a statement released Monday, the company said it was transparent and accountable with its subsidy claims and called the accusations baseless.

Olufemi Soneye, the spokesperson for NNPC, issued a statement rejecting the claims that the company had manipulated subsidy figures.

“NNPC conducts its businesses with accountability and transparency, in accordance with international best practices. At no time has NNPC inflated its subsidy claims with the Federal Government,” Soneye asserted.

The statement further highlighted that all subsidy claims by NNPC are verifiable, with relevant records and documents provided to the appropriate authorities and agencies.

“NNPC notes with dismay the report in a section of the media alleging that it inflated subsidy claims by N3.3tn. We wish to state categorically that these claims are products of the febrile imagination of the reporters and their respective media houses,” Soneye added.

NNPC also addressed rumors of an impending audit of its accounts, clarifying that it was not aware of any such audit or probe.

“NNPC is neither aware of any audit of its subsidy claims nor any ensuing probe. We resist any attempt to drag the company into the apparent politics of fuel subsidy, as we currently operate on a commercial basis and under the express provisions of the Petroleum Industry Act,” the statement read.

The company reiterated its commitment to transparency through its Transparency, Accountability, and Performance Excellence (TAPE) mantra, noting that it has independently invited external auditors to review its books on several occasions.

The denial from NNPC comes amidst a backdrop of significant financial scrutiny. Before President Bola Tinubu’s administration, Nigeria allocated trillions of naira annually to petrol subsidies.

However, President Tinubu put an end to this practice during his inaugural address on May 29, 2023, marking a significant policy shift.

“NNPC calls on media practitioners and media houses to exercise restraint and verify information before publication, in keeping with the ethics of the noble profession of journalism, to avoid misleading the public,” Soneye concluded.

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