The Managing Director of the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company, (KPRC) Engr. Adewale Ladenegan says the refinery is obsolete as it has not been upgraded since it was inaugurated in 1982, adding that Turn Around Maintenance (TAM) on the facility was last carried out in 2008.
He made this known when members of the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream) paid an oversight visit to the refinery.
Ladenegan told the lawmakers that what KRPC needs is adequate financing to upgrade its obsolete equipment to electronic operations and robust management that would see to its optimal operation, ruling out privatisation as one of the best options towards turning around the refinery.
He said, “Privatization, I will say no. Because all the ones that you have privatized, where are the dividends? Because if I have the opportunity to ask questions, this is the question I ask. We that you are seeing here are patriotic Nigerians. If you give the refinery to those who have the money, they will still use the same people running it.
“The option that we will prefer is that type of NLNG, let everybody contribute and there will be no single person controlling the refinery and we manage it. Then you will be getting your dividends as at when due. This will take care of your investment and your country people will be there running it, not that you will be bringing people from India to be replacing Nigerians. No!
“Because all the ones that you have privatized We have not seen the dividends of NITEL, NEPA that you have privatized. Nigerians are still asking and instead, you are making the country to become more poorer and then jobless”.
Ladenegan urged the law makers to provide adequate funds for a complete Turn Around Maintenance of (TAM) of the plant.
According to him, upgrading the plant would improve its capacity to operate at 90 percent and would stop the importation of refined products and improve in the local content refineries and of the petroleum industry.
He told the committee that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was currently negotiating with various financiers to estimate how much the plant needed for the TAM program and its duration.
Chairman of the Committee, Joseph Akinlaja who said they were at the refinery on oversight visit, promised to ensure adequate measures were taken to return the facility to its past glory.
Akinlaja said the National Assembly needed to know the current status and production capacity of the plant.
He said they also needed to know the labour force of the plant as well as how it was being maintained to enable them identify areas that needed intervention.