By Amin Kef Sesay
In an exclusive interview with the Chief Executive Director of the National Petroleum Sierra Leone Limited, Kobi Walker on how sustainably will the company continue to operate, he categorically made it clear that the company is doggedly positioned to support the petroleum needs of its esteemed customers.
He stated that because of the selflessness and commitment of those who opted to establish the company when the Government decided to sell it 23 years ago, they have been able to empower more than 350,000 Sierra Leoneans, build 38 stations countrywide and establish relationships with 180 other Sierra Leonean stations.
From what was gathered it was determined that exceptionally, Management of the company has been very focused in prioritizing customer care bordering in quick responses to major concerns raised. With prudent managerial initiatives and seeing the need to expand appropriately, NP-SL thought it fit to open branches in Guinea, Liberia, Ivory Coast and The Gambia and all of them are extremely functioning well to the utmost satisfaction of host Governments plus its ever growing customers.
In doing so, the company has been contributing towards job creation and poverty reduction more especially as it is virtually impossible for the Governments of these countries to provide all job opportunities for citizens.
When cognisance is taken of the fact that Governments need revenue to finance development projects it is important to find the sources of generating such. NP, as a company, is one of the biggest taxpayers to Government. Management always makes it as a point of duty to timely pay taxes and despite battling with existing and unforeseeable challenges there has never been an instance when it has been coerced to do so.
Many have praised NP for making available cookers popularly known as NP Gas which is safe for cooking purposes. These NP Gas cookers are sold at reasonable prices and could be procured in all their filling stations as well as from authorized dealers. At a time like this when it has been recognized that it is advisable, for health reasons, to avoid using firewood or charcoal for cooking purposes the best option could be NP Gas, which is hygienic, clean and quick.
Talking about effective implementation of the company’s Local Content Policy, NP-SL stands tall as it is truly the only 100% indigenous company that employs 100% Sierra Leoneans as workers. The company gives preference to employing Sierra Leoneans which is a clear indication that it adheres to the country’s Local Content Policy as utilizing local talents makes it possible for indigenes to acquire useful knowledge and skills through various training programs.
It is important to know that the company deals with individuals and various entities, always ensuring that its various imported petroleum products are available and are sold at affordable prices.
There is a good business strategy in place whereby entities or customers are permitted to use chits to secure fuel and pay later. Such is very advantageous more so when those entities do not always have readily available cash at hand to be purchasing petroleum products from time to time. This symbiotic relationship with its customers has been paying huge dividends making NP very endearing to all and sundry.
With regards recognition, the regulatory institution of the different petroleum companies in the country, Petroleum Regulatory Agency, has also lauded NP in recent times for its efficient service delivery in its areas of operation.
There could be no doubt to authoritatively state that NP-SL Ltd. is doing exceptionally well not only here where it is rooted but in the aforementioned countries where it has vibrant branches.