We Stand By All Our Audit Reports – NEITI

The Management of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has said, there was no where it has denied any of its Audit Reports as being insinuated by Mischief Markers.

NEITI said, the clarification was necessary because of a story in a section of the media, credited to the National Coordinator of the Publish What You Pay (PWYP), Nigeria, where the
authors insinuated that NEITI denied the contents of its recently released 2021 oil and gas industry report.

While describing the insinuation as shocking, unfounded, incorrect, false and misleading, the agency said, it solidly stands by the crucial facts, information and data publicly disclosed in all its Industry Reports, including the 2021 oil and gas industry report that is already in the public domain.

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Setting the record straight, NEITI emphasised that its reports were empirical, covered entities driven, with multi stakeholders’ participation and ownership.

The agency “reinstates that it is always available to enlighten and offer clarifications on issues contained in any of its reports when called upon to do so. That was what NEITI did when the Agency clarified its position on the process that characterized the 2020/2021 marginal oil fields bids commenced by the defunct Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR)’.

It said, the “2020/2021 Report that covered the period promptly tracked, faulted and queried the bid process. The Report also noted that the DPR which commenced the process ceased to exist by August 2021 when the Petroleum Industry Act took effect.

“This followed the creation of two regulatory institutions in the sector including the Nigeria Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission-NUPRC which took over the responsibilities of the defunct DPR including the marginal field bid exercise in 2022/23.

“NEITI equally publicly clarified that under the NEITI independent processes it is the Agency’s industry report for the 2022-2023 that will comprehensively review and report on how that exercise was conducted and possibly concluded by the NUPRC.

“NEITI further stated that except and until the 2022/23 industry report is conducted and published, the agency is in no position to hold neither the NUPRC nor any other institution, individuals or group accountable.

“On the statement allegedly credited to the NNPC Ltd and attributed to the media that “NEITI dismissed many of the allegations in its 2021 report”, NEITI hereby states categorically, that this is totally false, strange and ridiculous. NEITI never did that. As an Agency, we stand by our reports”, it said.

NEITI said, “while still in doubt that the alleged statement actually emanated from the NNPC, NEITI will not only be engaging with the Corporation to verify the source and authenticity of the illogical statement, but reaffirms that we stand by our reports at all times.

“NEITI wishes to reassure the public that we will not be distracted from the series of meetings and constructive engagements already ongoing between the NEITI, NUPRC and NNPC Ltd to address remedial issues raised by the report especially unremitted revenues payable to the federation.

“NEITI wishes to restate that the impression by the authors of the uninformed petition, that relevant government agencies and companies covered by the agency’s processes are enemies to NEITI for which disagreements and acrimony must prevail at all times in all engagements is quite wrong and unfortunate.

“NEITI is not an enemy to any and all of these agencies and other covered entities. In fact, they are stakeholders and partners that require collaboration, cooperation and partnerships based on constructive dialogue and engagements around extractive industry issues.

“Furthermore, while NEITI has no control over how relevant government agencies in Nigeria, companies and civil society organisations respond or engage with the contents of its reports including the 2021 Oil & Gas Report in the public space, it strongly advised that such engagements should be fair, open, constructive, issue-based, devoid of falsehood, blackmail or deliberate mischief.

“NEITI therefore, welcomes and applauds the support and special interest of the many hard working notable civil society organizations that held events and organised programmes to enhance and support the ongoing dissemination of the 2021 oil and gas report.

“NEITI equally applauds the National Assembly where the same Report has been laid before the plenary session of the House of Representatives for debate for the first time in NEITI’s history. A public hearing on the contents of the report is being planned by the relevant Committees of the National Assembly, House of Representatives in due course”, the agency said.

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