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Sylva and Kyari Honoured by Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi

It was a prestigious outing for the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as its Group Managing Director (GMD) Malam Mele Kyari and the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva.

The two were conferred with honorary doctorate degrees from the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi.

The honour done to Kyari and Sylva was also extended to Sen. Bola Tinubu, National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, former Governor of Adamawa State, Murtala Nyako and Mr Godwin Emefiele, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The Vice Chancellor of the University Prof. Anande Kimbir, described the recipients as worthy Nigerians who have contributed to the growth and development of the country.

While Sylva was conferred with D.Sc (Honoris Causa) Letters, Kyari bagged the University’s Honorary degree in Marketing.

The honours for the two leading Nigerian officials in the Petroleum industry were the highpoint of week-long activities for the combined convocation ceremony for the award of certificates and prizes to Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate degree graduates.

A total of 8,192 graduands comprising 7, 073 First Degrees and 1, 119 Higher Degrees were awarded degrees and certificates.

The Federal University of Agriculture Makurdi (FUAM) was established on Jan. 1, 1988 and has evolved from the defunct Federal University of Technology which was established in 1980 and later became the Makurdi campus of the University of Jos (UniJos) in October, 1980.

In a related development, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, was awarded the Gas Decade personality award by the Oil and Gas Trainers Association of Nigeria (OGTAN) for his lead role in revolutionalising and opening up of the country’s gas sector.

Speaking at the award ceremony, the President of OGTAN, Dr Mayowa Afe, praised Sylva’s dedication and innovation towards the Federal Government’s Gas initiatives and policies.

“We are here to acknowledge what you have done for this country. You have brought sanity to the Petroleum Industry; you have also declared Nigeria, on behalf of the President, a gas-based Nation.

“We have looked at all you have done for the country and we have decided to honour you. On behalf of the Oil and Gas Trainers Association of Nigeria we have come to say you have done very well,” the President of OGTAN said.

association’s President was accompanied by key executives of OGTAN including Afolabi Davidson, the incoming Vice President and Chizoba Oduah, OGTAN’s manager.

In his acceptance speech, Sylva said Nigeria would continue to expand the nation’s gas frontiers in line with global energy transition.

“We must focus on gas, we must unlock our huge gas reserves as a way of diversifying the economy. I really appreciate this award and I promise that this will spur me to do even more for this country,” he said.

Sylva was instrumental in kick-starting the National Gas Expansion Program, NGEP, the Autogas Policy, the 614KM Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano natural gas pipeline among other stellar gas achievements.

It was also a moment of fulfillment as the Nigerian Gas Company Limited (NGC), a subsidiary of the NNPC received the ISO 9001/2015 certification after fulfilling the requirement of the certification in its various facilities.

Managing Director of NGC, Seyi Omotowa, who received the certification on behalf of the company, said the feat marks the beginning of a new journey for NGC.

Omotowa reiterated the commitment of the Company to continually uphold her standard in delivering high quality goods and services to its various clienteles.

He assured that the NGC would be on its toes in order to maintain the top-quality certification requirements, saying all through the year, the company would endeavour to measure up to standard in all spheres of its operations.

On Friday, the NNPC said that the Corporation was not in any financial straits as insinuated in certain sections of the media.

Dr kennie Obateru, General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the corporation, disclosed in Abuja that the revenue projection contained in the letter to the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) being cited in the media was only to the Federation revenue stream being managed by the Corporation.

Obateru said that the projection was not a reflection of the overall financial performance of the Corporation.

“NNPC maintains that it is conscious of its role and is doing everything possible to shore up revenues and support the Federation at all times.

“The shortfall will be remedied by the corporation as it relates only to the Federation revenue stream being managed by the NNPC and does not reflect the overall financial performance of the corporation.

“The NNPC remains in positive financial trajectory for the period in question,” Obateru said.

He further said that the corporation pledged to continue to pursue and observe its cost optimisation process with a view to maximizing remittances to the Federation Account.

Also in the week, the NNPC subsidiary Nigeria Petroleum Development Company Ltd. (NPDC) said more than 10,000 indigent students from its host communities have benefited from its scholarship programmes since year 2000.

The Manager, Community Relations Department, NPDC, Mr Dahiru Abubakar, who made this known during the conduct of the 2019/2020 scholarship examination in Warri, Delta, noted that about 379 students were invited from all the NPDC host communities for its latest examination which held on Saturday.

Represented by the team lead of the Warri examination centre, Mr Noble Imabibo, Abubakar revealed that the examination was conducted simultaneously in three centres at Warri in Delta State, Egbema in Imo State and Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

According to him, the effort is part of NPDC’s corporate social responsibilities to its host communities aimed at promoting human capital development.

Also speaking, Prof. Prekeyi Tawari-Fufeyin, Coordinator of the NPDC Scholarship Examination, Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun (FUPRE) thanked NPDC for the privilege given to the students.

Tawari-Fufeyin urged other corporate organisations to emulate NPDC by coming up with people-oriented programmes.

“We are acting as consultants to NPDC to conduct the exams,” she said.

She advised the students to always prepare well for the examination, adding that performance in the past few years had reduced.

Miss Utohware Oghale, an ND-II student of Ozoro Polytechnic, Delta, said the scholarship if awarded to her would be used to pay school fees and buy books.

Mark Mane, a 200 level Physics student of University of Abuja, expressed confidence in the process.

According to Mane, it is the first time he was writing this kind of scholarship examination and he hopes to pass and get the scholarship.

The Warri venue has about 179 candidates, while Egbema and Port Harcourt centres have 100 candidates each.

The week in review saw oil prices rose amid optimistic forecasts of global fuel demand recovery, while the rapid spread of COVID-19 infections in India and a bigger-than-expected build in United States crude stocks capped gains.

Ship loaded with petroleum product

Brent crude futures rose 28 cents, or 0.42 per cent, to 66.70 dollars per barrel, following a 1.2 per cent gain.

The United States West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 29 cents, or 0.46 per cent, to 62.23 dollars per barrel, after gaining 1.7 per cent.

Meanwhile, the Market Intelligence Department of NNPC’s London Office reported that the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC-plus) decision to stick to plans for a phased easing of oil production restrictions from May to July underscored the producers’ confidence in recovery in global demand.

The alliance expressed concern about the rising number of infections in India, the world’s third largest oil importer and in other countries, which could disrupt the global economic recovery and dampen demand for oil.

However, OPEC-plus ministers also pointed to improved economic conditions in other parts of the world and signs of a recovery in oil demand which “is expected to pick up speed in the second half of the year.”

The outcome of recent talks means the alliance would go ahead with a gradual increase in production of 2.1 million barrels per day between May and July.

The figure includes the reversal of a voluntary cut of 1 million barrels per day in Saudi Arabia’s output.

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