The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) yesterday said the National Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), a subsidiary of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), is the worst debtor in the oil and gas sector.
The agency told a House of Representatives panel yesterday to ask the country’s top oil company to explain why NPDC, being the exploration arm of the NNPC, could not liquidate the huge debts it owes from its activities in the sector.
Speaking during a session with members of the ad-hoc panel probing revenue leakages in the oil and gas sector, the head of planning at DPR, Folasade Odunuga, said NPDC consistently refused to pay royalties on its crude production activities.
Responding to questions from members of the panel on how royalties are paid, Mrs. Odunuga said the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is the authority that determines the rate at which royalties paid in dollars are converted to naira before remitting same into the federation account.
“Royalties on crude oil are paid strictly in dollars directly into the federation account in JP Morgan, managed by the CBN,” she said.
But Mordecai Ladan, DPR head, said the agency has been having good working relationship with the CBN and that it had no cause whatsoever to doubt the apex bank.