NEITI Urges Stakeholders to Celebrate Key Progress, Achievements & Milestones in Oil, Gas & Mining Sectors Reforms.

  • NNPC Restates Commitment to Beneficial Ownership & Contract Transparency.

The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has urged Nigerians and stakeholders in the country’s oil, gas and mining sectors to celebrate key achievements, progress and milestones that have been recorded, through the mechanism of the global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) annual progress reporting.

The Executive Secretary of NEITI, Dr. Orji Ogbonnaya Orji stated this recently in Abuja while delivering his opening remarks at a stakeholder’s workshop on the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Annual Progress Reporting (APR), convened by his agency.

“The essence of this gathering is to broaden the scope of EITI annual progress reporting in Nigeria. The EITI is not just about NEITI, it is about Nigeria. The APR is about reporting, showcasing and celebrating the good work being done by various government agencies, civil society organizations and companies that are contributing to deepening reforms in Nigeria’s extractive industries”, Dr. Orji stated.

The Transparency Boss emphasized the need for stakeholders to share with NEITI their good works in the extractive industries to enable the transparency agency report and celebrate them using the instrumentality of the global EITI. “NEITI is offering its platforms to celebrate these key achievements being recorded through the EITI annual progress reporting framework”, he said.

According to Dr. Orji “We acknowledge that there are challenges, but we need to document, report and celebrate our efforts and key milestones in the process of addressing these challenges so as to build trust, earn investors’ confidence and attract desired investment into our economy”.

Speaking at the event, EITI Anglophone Country Manager, Dr. Mike Uzoigwe, described the Annual Progress Reporting as a very critical aspect of the EITI implementation and one of the core requirements for all implementing countries.  He explained that the APR provides the opportunity for stakeholders to evaluate how EITI implementation is transforming the operations of member countries extractive landscape.

Dr. Uzoigwe commended NEITI for its work, saying that “Nigeria remains the most elaborate EITI implementing country. Right from the beginning, the country has always set the pace and standard and therefore need to do everything possible to sustain this enviable leadership role in the global EITI community”, he stated.

Also speaking at the event, the Director General, National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), Dr. Idris Musa expressed satisfaction with the work of NEITI, noting that his agency will work to deepen EITI reporting in Nigeria. He informed participants that “his agency can now track and report our own gas flare, we are no longer depending on third party data and record”

The Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Mele Kyari restated the Corporation’s commitment to beneficial ownership and contract transparency in the country’s oil and gas sector.

Mr. Mele Kyari who was represented by the Corporation’s Group General Manager, Governance, Risk & Compliance, Mr Chris Akamario said: “we are going to continue to work with NEITI to deepen beneficial ownership disclosure in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, beyond statutory ownership in the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) records. We have to bring in the banks both at the local and international levels. We are also going to work with NEITI to implement contract transparency in the sector and cooperate with NEITI to broaden Nigeria’s annual progress reporting in line with the requirements of the global EITI”.

Mr Akamario explained that NEITI and the NNPC have come a long way in the EITI implementation journey, noting that the symbiotic relationship between the two organizations was informed by the strategic positions they both occupied in the country’s oil and gas sector.

According to him, “We are confident to say that our engagements with NEITI is leading us to the place Nigerians want us to be, with the support of NEITI we are able to close out on most of the outstanding issues in our operations which have become recurring decimals in past NEITI audit reports”.

In his goodwill message, the Director, Mining Cadastre Office (MCO), Mr. Mustapha Yusuf noted that the stakeholders’ workshop on EITI progress reporting came at the right time when Nigerians and the entire world are becoming more interested in the contributions of the mining sectors to the country’s economy.

According to Mr. Yusuf, MCO collaboration with NEITI has led to innovations such as introduction of an online based system that has now decentralized the agency’s operations, and integration with other relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, leading to improvement in revenue generation from the sector. He informed participants that his agency has already commenced implementation of beneficial ownership and mainstreaming in line with the global EITI standard.

Speaking on behalf civil society, Ms. Faith Nwadishi emphasized that EITI implementation and annual progress reporting is not about NEITI, rather, it is about Nigeria and all the actors that are working in the extractive industries.

She commended NEITI for convening a stakeholder meeting on EITI annual reporting, noting that the meeting represents a unique innovation in the country’s EITI implementation. She urged the management of the NEITI to sustain this commendable drive.

The EITI requirement 7.4 (review the outcomes and impacts of EITI implementation) mandates multi-stakeholders groups (MSG) to document their review of impacts and outcomes of the EITI implementation in an annual progress report or through other means as may be agreed by MSG. It also requires that all stakeholders should be able to participate in reviewing the impact of EITI implementation, provide feedbacks, and have their views reflected in the annual progress report.

The event was well attended by stakeholders drawn from government, companies, civil society organizations and the media engaging in the extractive sector.

Obiageli Onuorah

Head,Communications and Advocacy

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