The new Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Emmanuel Kachikwu, in a bid to begin plugging leakages from the state-run oil firm, will from this week start inviting oil traders who were awarded crude oil swaps and offshore processing contracts by NNPC during the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, ThisDay reports.

NNPC sources noted that the aim was to reopen the reconciliation process for the oil swaps and offshore processing agreements  (OPAs) to determine if the oil traders met the terms of the contracts in terms of delivery of fuel product cargoes to NNPC’s subsidiary the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company (PPMC).

It would be recalled that in June, the Department of State Services (DSS) had allegedly opened a probe into the crude oil swaps and OPAs entered into by NNPC and oil traders, as there was the suspicion that some of the traders lifted crude oil and sold it, but under-delivered product cargoes to NNPC, thus costing the country several billions of dollars.

As such, Kachikwu intends to start a probe this week by inviting the oil traders to account for the crude oil they lifted and products that were delivered in return. Where it is established that they under-delivered fuel cargoes, they would be asked to repay NNPC what they owe, failing which they shall be handed over to the law enforcement agencies for prosecution.