President Muhammadu Buharu has appointed Senator Ifeanyi Araraume as the head of the board for the soon-to-be incorporated Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited.

The President also made the Group Managing Director of the NNPC Mele Kyari as the chief executive officer of the NNPC Limited.

This is following his order for the commencement of the process for NNPC’s incorporation within six months. Umar Ajiya will serve as chief financial officer of the new company. Other board members include Tajudeen Umar (Northeast), Lami Ahmed (Northcentral), Mohammed Lawal (Northwest), Margaret Chuba Okadigbo (Southeast), Mrs. Constance Harry Marshal (Southsouth), and Pius Akinyelure (Southwest).

The announcement of the board members and the President’s nod for the registration of the new company signals the beginning of the implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).

While signing the bill that gave birth to the PIA in August, Buhari gave the nine-man steering committee headed by the Minister of State for Petroleum Timipre Sylva. 12 months to complete its assignment.

“We are all aware that past administrations have identified the need to further align the industry for global competitiveness, but there was lack of political will to actualise this needed transformation,” The President said.

Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Femi Adesina, in a statement released on Sunday night explained that the appointments and directive were in tandem with Section 53(1) of the PIA.

The section requires the Minister of Petroleum Resources to call for the incorporation of the NNPC Limited within six months of commencement of the Act in consultation with the Minister of Finance on the nominal shares of the company. The President holds the position of Petroleum Resources minister.

“President Muhammadu Buhari, in his capacity as minister of Petroleum Resources has directed the incorporation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited.

“This is in consonance with Section 53(1) of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021, which requires the Minister of Petroleum Resources to cause for the incorporation of the NNPC Limited within six months of commencement of the Act in consultation with the Minister of Finance on the nominal shares of the Company.

“The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr. Mele Kolo Kyari, has, therefore, been directed to take necessary steps to ensure that the incorporation of the NNPC Limited is consistent with the provisions of the PIA 2021.

“Also, by the power vested in him under Section 59(2) of the PIA 2021, President Buhari has approved the appointment of the board and management of the NNPC Limited, with effect from the date of incorporation of the company.

“Chairman of the board is Senator Ifeanyi Ararume, while Mele Kolo Kyari and Umar I. Ajiya are Chief Executive Officer, and Chief Financial Officer, respectively,” the statement reads.

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