Kaduna refinery MD opposes privatisation of refineries

Posted by Garba Muhammad | 13 December 2018 | 2,215 times

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The Managing Director Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company (KRPC), Engineer Adewale Ladenegan, has kicked against the privatisation of Nigerian refineries by the government.

He stated this while responding to a question from the Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum (Downstream), Hon Joseph Akinlaja, during the Committee’s oversight visit to the refinery on Wednesday in Kaduna.

“I say ‘no’ to privatisation of refineries because all the ones that were privatised, where is the dividend?” he asked.

He said the best way is to fund the refineries to enable them to provide enough fuel to Nigerians.

“I have not seen the dividend of [the privatisation of] Nigeria Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) and the Nigeria Electricity Power Authority (NEPA). By privatising those public companies, you are making Nigerians become poorer and jobless,” he noted.

He also observed that lack of Turn Around Maintenance (TAM) of the Kaduna Refinery has made several types of equipment obsolete.

“Some units have been down for 10 years, the instruments we have here are already obsolete.

“What we need here is to upgrade all the unit instrument. In refinery business, the world best practice is to run at continues improvement level,” he added.

The MD said the United States of America is no longer importing crude oil from Nigeria, hence “the need to add value to our crude before we sell it”.

Mr. Ladenegan said all the staff were very much engaged in maintenance and preservation operations, and therefore the company does not have the problem of staff redundancy. The junior staff, he said, were trained in Italy where they also worked in some refineries before returning to Nigeria.

In his remarks, the Chairman of the committee said the issue of privatising the refinery would be debated when it is brought before the federal legislature.

He lamented the state of the refinery which, according to him, has been shut down for about a year.

“We came here because we felt it is not right for us to have crude oil in Nigeria and still continue to import petroleum products and by so doing, providing job for other people from other countries where they are refining and then we now buy the product.

“We believe we can make our own refineries work which will make the price of the petroleum products cheaper because we will not need to freight crude overseas and freight the same product back,” he said.

He emphasised the importance of manpower, adding that those who started the refinery have aged hence the need to bring in fresh hands to take over from them.

•Photo by Garba Muhammad shows a cross section of the members of the House Committee of Petroleum (Downstream) and the management of KRPC during an oversight visit if the refinery on Wednesday in Kaduna

Source: News Express

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