Ex-NNPC GMD tasks engineers on local contents

Former Group Managing Director (GMD) of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Malam Abubakar Lawal Yar’Adua has tasked Nigerian engineers to use more local contents in engineering and construction works for the development of the country. 

Addressing the 10th Public Lecture and Award Presentation by the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) as the guest speaker, Yar’Adua stressed that the importance of local contents could not be over-emphasised, “local content is very important in developing our country. So, as Nigerian engineers, don’t be afraid of failure. If you failed, evaluate why you failed. Local content is very important in developing Nigeria as a country in terms of infrastructure. 

“When I was in Kaduna Refinery, there was a failure in the Fluid Catalytic Cracking Unit (FCCU) and we searched Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, and they said Ajaokuta Steel can repair it, I said okay. We put Ajaokuta on the list of six companies. We invited them. They came. They gave a very good proposal which we sent to Kellogue Engineering who had the licenses of the Fluid Catalytic Cracking Unit. Kellogue replied that they cannot even repair it. 

“So, the question now came about the finance and Ajaokuta again, came lowest. Then, NNPC said what are we going to do and I said well it is about local content. And they said what if it failed, and I said if it failed, we should evaluate why it failed and correct it and move forward. 

“We went to a Federal Executive Council meeting under General Sani Abacha. I was sitting down with my GMD. They called on us to present our case. I presented the case – list of companies that we registered and how technically Ajaokuta became the best. 

“I told them that we wrote to Kellogue Engineering who had the licenses for the FCCU; they said that can’t repair it and that they are going to send some inspectors to come and witness that job and they (Ajaokuta) are the lowest. 

“As an engineer, I don’t fear failure. If it fails, we will evaluate why it failed and then we correct it and move ahead. There is nothing wrong and if that is not acceptable, I am ready to be sacked or even ready to go to jail for that. I told the then Federal Executive Council of the late General Sani Abacha.”