Nigeria’s oil industry shrouded in secrecy – Ribadu

A former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Malam Nuhu Ribadu, has made a case for transparency and accountability in the Nigeria’s oil sector.
Ribadu, who described oil as a mainstay of the nation’s economy, noted that the commodity accounts for 70 percent of the nation’s revenue.
Ribadu stated this when he spoke on ‘Transparency, a desired but challenging culture in the Nigeria Oil and Gas Sector’, at the launch of VALUECHAIN, an oil and gas publication, on yesterday in Abuja.
While noting that about 90 percent of the country’s foreign exchange comes from the oil sector, he however lamented that the country has very few of the most richest people, as well as majority of the very poor individuals in the world today.
The former EFCC boss said for decades, the Nigerian oil and gas industry had been shrouded in secrecy, and that not even the decision makers were sure of the status or activities of its happenings.
“Key players have turned the industry into cult-like affair where transparency is abhorred, and whatever details one would require is made absolutely difficult.
If everything is done transparently and people get to know the happenings of how and who does what, it makes life easier even for the authorities, as it also addresses restiveness and agitations,” he stated.
He highlighted the improvement by the present administration in the oil sector, noting that the demand for accountability and transparency had recently become driven by the public and acknowledged and published by the 2017 Resource Governance Index.
The former EFCC boss further noted that the improvement recorded in the last couple of years had significantly reflected in the increase of the production figures by the NPDC producing 1.950m barrels daily.
Also speaking, Minister of Water Resources, Egnr.
Suleiman Adamu said the great abuse suffered by the sector informed the reforms under the present administration, with a view to entrenching the culture of transparency and discouraging the act of criminality in the industry.
In his welcome address, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of VALUECHAIN, Mr.
Musa Bashir Usman, said the publication was conceived to serve the local and international needs of the sector.

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