In what appears to be an effort to give bite to Federal Government’s new recruitment policy that puts polytechnic’s Higher National Diploma (HND) at par with University degree certification, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has stated that basic academic requirement for newly employed graduate trainees in the corporation is a minimum of a Second-Class Upper Division, (degree) or an HND.
This development further entails that, alternatively, a candidate holding a Second Class Lower Division degree or an HND Lower Credit Diploma holder must in addition have acquired a master’s degree in a relevant field.
The oil corporation explained the parameters for employment as well as career progression in the organisation using the recently concluded Graduate Trainee employment process as well as top Management promotion exercise executed by the corporation as an illustration.
The corporation noted that unblemished academic competence, logical thinking, ability to engage meaningfully in problem solving in addition to federal character are key to becoming an employee of the corporation.
To progress in the Management cadre, professional competence, accountability and transparency as well as ensuring national spread in top management positions are critical factors that are not negotiable.
Dr. Kennie Obateru, NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja, explained the parameters for the recruitment exercise stating that national spread was also considered.
He said that in the last recruitment exercise, qualified applicants undertook computer-based test conducted by a neutral national examinations body, following, which the best performers were further taken through a formal interview sessions to ensure their suitability.
Obateru stated that the end product of the rigorous exercise was the new set of employees who have shown a lot of promise since the beginning of the on-boarding programme which started earlier this month including engagements with Mallam Mele Kyari, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, and some members of top management of the corporation.
The NNPC spokesperson says the fairness in the appointment of the new employees was such that many of the new employees expressed astonishments securing employment in the National Oil Company without any godfather.
He relayed the testimonies of a few of the Graduate Trainees who marvelled at the opportunities before them: Oluwatobi Ayo Yusuf from Lagos: Thanked the NNPC for the vision of providing a level playing field for all the participants in the recruitment process, describing it as the most fair and transparent recruitment that he has ever participated in in Nigeria.
Onianwa Vin-Kingsley described NNPC recruitment process as excellently remarkable and urged other private and government institutions to always take a cue from the NNPC in order to inspire confidence in Nigeria youths.
Onyeulo Ikenna, a First Class graduate of Chemical Engineering said despite the rigorous online application process for the NNPC job which almost deterred him from applying, he was impressed that he was employed without being recommended by any godfather.
Enyi Ada from Port Harcourt, Rivers State said NNPC’s employment journey disappointed all her negativity about how recruitment processes were conducted in Nigeria, stressing that despite the Novel Coronavirus pandemic, the corporation was able to conclude the process seamlessly.
Bolarinwa Simeon, a Civil Engineer said life was willing to give you whatever you wanted, noting that the entire NNPC recruitment process was transparent and credible from the computer-based test to the interview.
Suleiman Mahmud explained that his journey to NNPC was miraculous as he applied on the last day of the application and after receiving his offer of appointment his sick mother recovered from her age-long ailment miraculously.
The 1,050 graduate trainees were recently recruited by the NNPC and assumed duty virtually on Monday, May 4, 2020, due to the lockdown occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic in the Country.
Obateru says the experiences of the long-time employees of NNPC are not dissimilar to those of the new intakes, adding that professional competence, adherence to the principle of transparency and accountability informed the recent top management appointment executed in the first week of March this year.
He further explained that the principle of federal character was also a factor in the progression of the new appointees.
Throwing more light, Obateru stated that many top management officers of the corporation were moved to new positions while some were promoted based on their verifiable track records of performance, saying some Chief Operating Officers, Group General Managers and Managing Directors of subsidiaries were affected in what some industry analysts described as the most objective placement exercise in the recent history of the National Oil Company.
Topping the list of the changes, he said, was the re-deployment of the erstwhile Chief Operating Officer (COO), Upstream, Mr. Roland Ewubare, to the Ventures and Business Development Directorate as COO.
Under the arrangement, Ewubare, in the new order got an additional responsibility of business development, besides managing the group’s ventures.
Obateru stated that Ewubare would bring his competence to bear in the onerous task of laying the groundwork for the corporation to take up new business opportunities and challenges thrown up by the Covid-19 impasse. The new position would also see Ewubare traversing Downstream, Midstream and Upstream sectors to develop new ventures.
Prior to his promotion as COO, Upstream, Ewubare was the Group General Manager, National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) between August 2017 and July 2019. He was also the Managing Director, Integrated Data Services Limited, an NNPC subsidiary, from August 2015 to August 2017. Ewubare is from the South South region of the Country.
Obateru said Ewubare’s position as COO Upstream was taken over by Engr. Adeyemi Adetunji, erstwhile Chief Operating Officer in charge of Downstream directorate.