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Atiku Criticizes NNPC’s Refinery Privatization Approach

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has criticized the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation’s (NNPC) approach to privatizing the recently rehabilitated refinery, calling for transparency and questioning the benefits of the move for the country and its citizens.

Atiku, a vocal advocate for comprehensive reforms in Nigeria’s oil sector and other key areas of the economy, expressed disappointment that his earlier recommendations, outlined in “The Atiku Plan” (2018) and “My Covenant With Nigerians” (2022), had not been heeded by the Buhari administration.

The former Vice President highlighted the government’s decision not to privatize the refineries earlier, allowing them to remain idle for years while incurring significant staff salaries. 

He further criticized the administration’s choice to secure a $1.5 billion loan for the rehabilitation of the facility.

“Now, the current administration wants to turn the rehabilitated refinery over to private concerns for operation and maintenance,” Atiku lamented in his statement. 

He argued that it would have been more prudent for the NNPC to sell the refinery before rehabilitation, thus avoiding the burden of additional debt.

Atiku called on the NNPC to provide satisfactory explanations to the Nigerian public regarding the benefits of their chosen approach to privatization. 

The statement underscored the importance of transparency in the dealings between the NNPC and the private operators, emphasizing the need for a clear understanding of how this privatization would positively impact Nigeria and its citizens.

The former Vice President urged the NNPC Limited to address the concerns raised and ensure that the privatization process aligns with the best interests of the nation. 

Atiku’s critique comes at a time when Nigeria grapples with economic challenges, and the government’s decisions regarding key sectors such as oil and infrastructure management are under increased scrutiny.

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