- Total Denies Bribery Allegations in Support Vessels’ Bids
Following petition from the Indigenous Vessels Operators Association of Nigeria to the Senate Committee on Local Content, Total Upstream Nigeria Limited (TUPNI) and National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) attended a meeting with the Senate Committee on Local Content on the 9th of January where TUPNI and NAPIMS provided clarification on an ongoing call for tender for the provision of support vessels.
According to the External Relations Manager, Total, Charles Ebereonwu, following this Senate Committee meeting, some media articles reported allegations of bribery and potential conflict of interest in the contracting process.
Ebereonwu said Total Upstream Nigeria Limited has strict Conflict of Interest and Compliance policies and rejects all forms of bribery and corruption.
“Total Upstream Nigeria Limited and its partners remain committed to the development of Nigerian Content and will continue to maintain strong and steadfast partnerships with the Nigerian government, NNPC and indigenous companies in developing the country’s hydrocarbon industry,” he said.
The Indigenous Vessels Operators Association of Nigeria had petitioned the Senate Committee on Nigerian Content on the alleged cancellation of bids by its members for the provision of Platform Support Vessels (PSV) and Terminal Support Vessels (TSV) by Total.
At an investigative hearing by the Senate Committee on Nigerian Content following the petition on violation of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Content Development Act by TUPNI in its contract awards, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru, restated its commitment to the development of local content in the oil and gas industry.
Addressing the committee, Baru who was represented by the Group General Manager, National Petroleum and Investment Management services (NAPIMS), Roland Ewubare, said: “Every serious economy grows on the strength of the private sector, so it behooves on us to support them and NNPC is fully committed to it.”
On the alleged contravention of the Nigerian Content Act by Total, Baru said the company was one of the international oil companies (IOCs) that have a preference for local companies and assured the committee that the concerns of both the Vessel Owners and Total would be addressed.
He however appealed to the committee to write the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) for a waiver of the grading system which led to the cancellation of the bids to allow the already prequalified companies to go on with the process in the national interest.