NNPCL declines FOI request on staff who alleged acquisition of properties

In its reply, the company said the personal inflation of nuts staff is not disclosable.

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) has declined to disclose information in response to a Freedom of Information (FOI) request.

The request sought details about the employment status and reported the acquisition of multi-million naira properties by one of its staff members, Ms. Asabe Waziri.

Pulse reported earlier that the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) contacted Mele Kyari, the NNPCL’s Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO), concerning the employment situation of Ms Waziri, a member of its staff.

In its reply, the company said the personal inflation of nuts staff is not disclosable.

NNPCL, through its counsel, Chief Afe Babalola (SAN), in its reply dated April 22, 2024, to an FOI request by the HURIWA, said, “Accordingly, we regret our client’s inability to accede to your demand for the requested information. Our client, with this, outrightly rejects your request.”

In the FOI request, HURIWA had sought to know the following:

NNPC Limited is seeking details regarding Ms Waziri’s job status, such as her role, department, employment history, salary, benefits, start date, and any documentation reflecting her tenure.

Other information sought by HURIWA includes the acquisition of property: clarification on how Ms Waziri, as a public servant, allegedly acquired two units of residential property (specifically, units 3B and 3C, Abbey Signature Apartments, 1 Mekong Close, Maitama Abuja FCT) valued at ₦260 million and the verification of the allegation that Ms Waziri purchased a prized housing asset in Lagos and information regarding any additional actions or disciplinary measures taken by NNPCL.

In its response, the company said, “Having reviewed your request, we invite you to please note that our client has ceased to be subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2011 (FOIA) following the coming into force of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021, by which the erstwhile Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (the Corporation), which was a public institution, transited to a limited liability company upon the registration of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) under the Companies and Allied Matters Act 2020.

“Thus, our client is not obligated to respond to demands for information under the FOIA. Be that as it may, our client highlights the following in the interest of due process and transparency: i. The information listed as items 1 to 4 is exempted from the application of the Freedom of Information Act, 2011. Section 14 (1)(b) of the Freedom of Information Act, 2011.”

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