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NNPC Says Allegation of AKK Contract Inflation is Baseless, False, Malicious … Threatens Legal Action Against Online Publication

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has dismissed, in its entirety, the allegation that the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) Gas Pipeline Project was inflated to the tune of $1.527billion, describing the accusation by an online medium against the National Oil Company as false, baseless and unfounded.
A release today in Abuja by the Corporation’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs, Dr. Kennie Obateru, stated that the NNPC was considering instituting legal actions against the medium and her collaborators.
NNPC stated in the release that the corporation brought the unfounded accusation to the attention of the Bureau for Public Procurement (BPP) which completely rejected the speculative analysis of the online medium as false and not portraying the true position of the BPP’s report on the subject.
“This is clearly a concocted analysis aimed at attacking the character of the Group Managing Director (GMD) of NNPC, Mallam Mele Kolo Kyari, and the integrity of the Bureau of Public Procurements (BPP). Mallam Mele Kyari did not become the GMD until July 2019 and he is being mentioned in a process that took place in 2017 by the account of the publication. This is rather unfortunate and malicious, considering that a further cut of $300million of the contract value was achieved under the Mele Kyari-led NNPC Management leading to the recognition by the Federal Executive Council as an unprecedented action.
The release explained that BPP, following a detailed review and analysis of the procurement bid, confirmed that the unit costs for line pipes adopted by the NNPC for the project were reasonable when compared with current market prices for 40”, 36”, 20” and 14” steel pipes, adding that it was on that basis that BPP confirmed and granted certificate of no objection dated August 11, 2017.
NNPC stated that the AKK project underwent a transparent and open competitive tender process that resulted in the emergence of the most competitive bidders, wondering how a competitive tender process could be inflated.
“Approval of all relevant authorities were obtained after an intense scrutiny by the various agencies. This is a deliberate attempt to mislead the Nigerian public with baseless information”, the release exclaimed.
NNPC said the AKK pipeline project was one of the key landmark projects that have had transparent processes from inception to date, with the entire evaluation exercise carried out by NNPC and Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC).
The corporation cited the various stringent due process reviews and scrutiny, internally and externally, which the AKK pipeline project was subjected to to include:
• Conduct of project bankability study, at project’s conception in 2013, undertaken by Standard Chartered Bank to confirm appetite for attracting financing from international community
• Execution of project feasibility and Front End Engineering Design (FEED) by a reputable international company, ILF of Germany, in 2014. The details developed at this phase had enough engineering design details to enable a competitive class of estimate to be submitted by the contractors
• Advertisement of the project in both local and foreign print media in 2013. After completion of the FEED study by ILF in 2015, the prequalified bidders were issued tender documents
• Competitive tendering and evaluation of the bids by both NNPC and transaction advisers, Alpine and also by a team from ICRC
• Extensive review of the project design and the final cost in 2017 by the BPP, culminating in the issuance of a Certificate of No Objection in August 2017
• Receipt of due process certificates for the project, including Original Business Case and Final Business Case from ICRC and Local Content Compliance Certificate from Nigerian Content Development and Management Board (NCDMB) before presenting to the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for approval in December 2017
• Renegotiation of the contract when financing was not to be provided by the contractors following a stalemate due to the inability of the company awarded the contract to progress financing in 2019, leading to further cut of $300million of the contract value under the Mele Kyari-led NNPC Management
• Formation of a Steering Committee in July 2020 by Mallam Mele Kyari comprising key project stakeholders as NNPC, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Justice, the Central Bank, Debt Management Office, Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) and representative from the Presidency to ensure transparency in the implementation of the project.

NNPC stated that after several failed attempts in the last 13 years to commence the AKK project activities, the leadership of Mallam Mele Kyari, within one year of stewardship brought the project on track leading to the award of the contract at a competitive price and eventual flag off of construction that the world witnessed in June 2020.
The release called on all well-meaning Nigerians to give the Mallam Mele Kyari-NNPC led Management the credit it deserves, even as it encouraged them to follow the execution of the project which it said was being undertaken in a transparent and aggressive manner in line with Transparency, Accountability, Performance Excellence Agenda of the Corporation.
NNPC advised members of the public to ignore the online medium report which it described as malicious, baseless and a direct attack on the character of the person of its Group Managing Director and the BPP, and designed to distract Mallam Kyari from successful pursuit of delivering the Next Level Agenda of President Buhari.

Dr. Kennie Obateru
Group General Manager
Group Public Affairs Division
NNPC, Abuja.
7th September, 2020.

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Dangote still Africa’s Most Admired Brand for 5 Consecutive Years

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Dangote still Africa’s Most Admired Brand for 5 Consecutive Years

The Pan-African and fully integrated conglomerate, Dangote Industries Limited (DIL) has again emerged as the most Admired Brand in Africa for the year 2022, for its leadership position in driving quality brands across the continent.

Dangote won awards in 8 different categories, on Wednesday at the venue of the award presentation organised by a renowned organisation Brand Africa in Lagos. The other awards include: Most Admired Nigerian Brand, West Africa’s Most Admired Brand that symbolises African Pride; West Africa’s Most Admired African Brand, and Most Admired Nigerian Brand in Africa, among others.

Founder and Chairman of Brand Africa, Thebe Ikalafeng, stated that Dangote has remained a stalwart global African brand and symbolises African pride. He added that Dangote has also moved up a rank in the Top 100 most admired brands and retains its #1 Made-in-Nigeria brand rank.
INDUSTRIAL GROWTH: DANGOTE TASKS STATES ON INVESTMENTS ENABLERS

Ikalafeng, giving an insight into the process of selecting the winners, said the rankings are based on a pan-African survey covering over 25 countries, which collectively account for an estimated over 85% of Africa’s population and 85% of the continent’s GDP.

According to him, “the research is conducted by GeoPoll, the world’s leading mobile surveying platform, with strategic analyses, insights and ranking conducted by Kantar, the world’s leading data, insights and consulting company and Brand Leadership Group, Africa’s foremost branding, strategic communications and intellectual property advisory firm.”

In a recent issue of the Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands rankings, Dangote and MTN retained their statuses as the most admired African brands recalled spontaneously and when prompted, respectively.

Group Chief Commercial Officer, Dangote Industries Limited, Rabiu Umar, who received the awards, commended Brand Africa for the initiative of building and promoting African brands. He expressed appreciation to the organisers and urged them not to relent in their efforts to see that brands from Africa compete favorably with foreign ones.

Umar said that Dangote has risen a notch higher as a global brand with the export of Dangote Fertiliser to many countries of the world. “People now identify with the brand and in all the countries where we operate, Dangote Cement has become a reference point,” he added.

Umar said, “To the management of DIL, the ranking was not unexpected, because the company has a long-standing reputation for quality, relevance, compliance and social stewardship. Our mission and vision engage and inspire us; and by extension connects us to both our internal and external stakeholders.

“We fervently believe that only Africans can develop Africa, and this gives us stronger sense of relevance in all the countries where we have our operations. We are touching lives by providing their basic needs and empowering Africans more than ever before, creating jobs, reducing capital flight, and helping government to conserve foreign exchange drain by supporting different industrial and infrastructural projects of African governments.”

Established in 2011, the Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands rankings are the most authoritative survey and analysis on brands and underlying businesses in Africa, based on a study by Geopoll across 29 countries spanning all the five economic regions.

An analysis of the data over the past 10 years, has established that on average, slightly over 20% of the brands admired by Africans are made in Africa.

 

 

PHOTO CAPTION:

 L-R, Thebe Ikalafeng, Founder and Chairman Brand Africa;  Rabiu Umar, Group Chief Commercial Officer, Dangote Industries Limited, and Karin du Chenne, Chief Growth Officer, Kantar EMEA, at the Presentation of Most Admired Brand That Symbolises Africa Pride in Africaand Seven other awards won byDangote Industries Limited at 2022 Africa’s Best Brands Awards, in Lagos on Wednesday 

 

 L-R, Thebe Ikalafeng,Founder and Chairman, Brand Africa; Tosin Adefeko, Chief Executive Officer, AT3 Resources; Rabiu Umar,Group Chief Commercial Officer, Dangote Industries Limited and Karin du Chenne, Chief Growth Officer,Kantar EMEA, at the Presentation of Most Admired Brand That SymbolisesAfrica Pride in Africa and Seven other awards won by Dangote Industries Limited at 2022 Africa’s Best Brands Awards, in Lagos on Wednesday 

DSC 0481: L-R, Thebe Ikalafeng, Founder and Chairman Brand Africa; Feyi Olubodun, Managing Partner Open Squares Africa; Tosin Adefeko, Chief Executive Officer, AT3 Resources;  Rabiu Umar, Group Chief Commercial Officer, Dangote Industries Limited and Karin du Chenne, Chief Growth Officer, Kantar EMEA at the Presentation of Most Admired Brand That SymbolisesAfrica Pride in Africa and Seven other awards won by Dangote Industries Limited at 2022 Africa’s Best Brands Awards, in Lagos on Wednesday

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INDUSTRIAL GROWTH: DANGOTE TASKS STATES ON INVESTMENTS ENABLERS

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Dangote, only Nigerian on Bloomberg’s top Billionaires’ lists…Fortune increases to $17.8bn

President of the Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote has challenged state governments to consider as topmost priority, the provision of enabling environment for investments as a potent means of attracting private sector operators to their state for investments.

The business mogul who was speaking on the sideline during the recently concluded Nasarawa economic summit in Lafia, said there is no state in Nigeria that is not blessed with resources which could serve as potential for industrial growth.

What the states should do, according to him, is to look inward and put in place economic policies that guarantee environment that would be conducive for investments in the available resources in the states.

“When states provide enabling environment, it will incentivize the private sector to invest and it will be a win-win situation for both the state and the private sector”, he explained.

Dangote recalled how the enabling environment in Lagos had motivated private sector operators to move into the Lekki Free Trade Zone, Lagos to establish companies which is now adding value not only to the economy of the state but also to Nigeria in general.

In the same vein, he stated that such is the enabling environment situation in Nasarawa that made his Dangote Sugar Plc to invest multi-million dollar sugar business in the state.

Dangote reiterated his position earlier while speaking during the opening of the summit that various economic policies including the land reform put in place by the Nasarawa state government were necessary requirements to a state that is committed to promote enabling socio-economic development, as well as improve the quality of lives of their citizenry.

Dangote commended the state governor Engr. Abdulahi Sule for providing the necessary enablers for the investment summit to achieve its goals. Such enablers, he said include, providing committed and focused leadership and well thought out institutional framework that enables the creation of sustainable conducive business and investment climate.

Dangote equally pointed out that it was not enough developing credible, comprehensive plan that identifies investment opportunities and projects but backing these up with supportive public policies and regulations that make these investment opportunities competitive.

“Here is the good news, I can say with confidence that Nasarawa State has in place all the three requirements that promises to guarantee the attainment of the goals of this summit.

“First, I can say, with all humility, that the state has the leadership with the vision and commitment to achieve it,” he said, while describing the Nasarawa governor, Engr. Abdulahi Sule as one of the visionary leaders that made the success of the Dangote Group possible.

“As the GMD then of Dangote Sugar Plc, he has proven this by positioning Dangote Sugar in the top tier of stock in the Nigerian Stock Exchange as the leading sugar company in Nigeria and also Africa,” Dangote stated.

Also speaking, former president of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama, in his keynote address shared some key thoughts on how Nasarawa State can proceed, with the benefit of hindsight, with its investment plan and implementation milestones.

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Dangote Cement grosses N413.2bn revenue in the first 3 months

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Dangote Cement’s commitment

In the first three months of the 2022 financial year, Dangote Cement has recorded a 24.2 percent increase in its revenue and an 18 percent increase in its profit after tax for the same period.

Unaudited results for three months ended 31st March 2022, showed revenue of N413.2 billion and a profit after tax of₦105.9 billion.

 

Analysis of the cement giant’s three months results indicated that Dangote Cement sold a total volume of 7.2Mt of cement across the group with Nigerian operations accounting for 4.8Mt while the rest of Africa did the balance of 2.4Mt.

 

Chief Executive Officer, Dangote Cement, Michel Puchercos, in his comments, said that the company started the first quarter on a positive note despite the new uncertainties brought by a very volatile global environment. He stated that increases recorded in revenue and profitability drove strong cash generation across the Group. Profit after Tax rose to ₦105.9 billion, up 18 percent compared to last year while Group EBITDA rose to  ₦211.0 billion, by 18.6 percent with an EBITDA margin of 51.1 percent.

 

Puchercos said, “On the operational side, we are ramping up production at our Okpella plant and are progressing well to deploy grinding plants in Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire. Demand remained strong across all markets, and we remain confident that Dangote Cement is positioned to meet customers’ expectations despite these temporary challenges.

 

Continuing our efforts to deliver shareholder value, Dangote Cement completed the second tranche of its buyback programme. Following the completion of both tranches, Dangote Cement has now bought back 0.98% of its shares outstanding. This share buy-back programme reflects the Company’s commitment in finding opportunities beyond dividend to return cash to shareholders.”

 

Puchercos added, “the volatile international context is strengthening our efforts to ramp up the usage of alternative fuels and execution of our export-to-import strategy. Reducing our dependence on imported inputs and making our markets self-sufficient has never been more relevant from a regional perspective.

 

Our continuous focus on efficiency, meeting strong market demand and maintaining our costs leadership drives our ability to consistently deliver superior profitability and value to all shareholders.”

 

Dangote Cement is Africa’s leading cement producer with nearly 51.6Mta capacity across Africa. A fully integrated quarry-to-customer producer, it has a production capacity of 35.25Mta in its home market, Nigeria. The Obajana plant in Kogi State, Nigeria, is the largest in Africa with 16.25Mta of capacity across five lines; Ibese plant in Ogun State has four cement lines with a combined installed capacity of 12Mta while Gboko plant in Benue state has 4Mta; and  Okpella plant in Edo state has 3Mta.

 

Through recent investments, Dangote Cement has eliminated Nigeria’s dependence on imported cement and has transformed the nation into an exporter of cement serving neighbouring countries.

 

 

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