A lawyer and current analyst, Liborous Oshoma has given an insight into what may have caused the friction between GMD of the NNPC Maikanti Baru and Minister of State for Petroleum resources Ibe Kachikwu. A memo written by the Minister to the President last week leaked. In the memo, Kachikwu accused the GMD of insubordination. The corporation in its reply yesterday called Kachikwu’s arguments baseless. Oshoma made the comments during a programme aired on Channels Television.
According to Oshoma, the ambiguous nature of the NNPC act empowers both the board and the NNPC in the management of the corporation.
“By virtue of Section 1, sub section 2 of the NNPC Act, the board manages the corporation and if you look at Section 3 of the act also, the GMD runs the day to day activities of the corporation. “
Why this is a problem
Oshoma also elaborated on why the dual authority is a problem. The NNPC Act was passed into law before the Public Procurement Act. The procurement act states that for every public procurement, the tenders board of a corporation and the approving authority (the Federal Executive Council) is enough for public procurement. Thus negating the role of the board in awarding contracts.
Who will bell the cat ?
Which of these acts should take precedence? The NNPC Act or the Public Procurement Act ? Ideally the case should be taken to court, but no one appears willing. Kachikwu would be unable to do this, as it would be interpreted as fighting an organization he supretends. The NNPC would also be reluctant to do so, as the current situation seems to favour it.
The Presidency maintains silence
While the spat between both parties goes back and forth, the Presidency has maintained silence. Outcomes of the meeting between the GMD and Osinbanjo, and Kachikwu and the President are unknown.