By Joseph BAMIDELE
ABUJA-The Management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has dissociated the Corporation from allegations of exporting crude oil using forged export clearance permit.
In a strongly worded statement signed by the Acting Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Fidel Pepple, the Corporation stated: “We neither have knowledge of the allegedly forged export permit nor its origin to warrant being linked with it as was done by the Leadership Newspaper.”
He explained that all crude oil and gas exports carried out by NNPC usually follow a rigid and established guideline which requires the Corporation to apply to the Department of Petroleum Resources for Export Clearance Forms which are duly completed and returned to the DPR for processing and onward submission to Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment which, upon satisfactory assessment, issues Export Permit Certificates to the exporters, copies of which are sent to the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the Nigerian Customs Service.
“We have always and continued to follow existing requirements for exporting crude oil and gas from the country. The process is complex and involves the Ministry of Trade and Investment, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, the DPR and the Nigerian Customs Service. NNPC is not the issuing authority for export permit certificates. It is therefore appalling for anyone to link NNPC with originating a fake export permit certificate or using same to export crude oil worth about $1.6bn as reported by the Leadership Newspaper,” Mr. Pepple stated.