PIB: Nigerian Governors Fault Proposed Ownership Structure For NNPC

The Nigeria Governors Forum wants the Petroleum Industry Bill amended to change the ownership structure proposed for the NNPC.

 

 

Nigerian governors have faulted the ownership structure of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation proposed in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).

They made their position known in a communique issued at the end of the 32nd Teleconference meeting of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, which was held on Wednesday.

“The Forum is in full support of the unbundling and commercialisation of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) but concerned with the proposed ownership structure of the NNPC which places ownership on the Federal Government,” the communique read in part.

This proposal, the governors argued ignores the fact that the NNPC is owned by the three tiers of government.

Rather than place the ownership of the NNPC on the Federal Government, the Governors’ forum recommended that the new entity (NNPC Limited) proposed in the PIB should be owned by a vehicle that holds the interest of the three tiers of government.

“For now, the institution that is positioned to carry out this mandate is the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA),” the NGF said.

They plan to take up the requested amendment to the PIB as well as the proposed three percent share of oil revenue to host communities and 30 percent share of profit for the exploration of oil and gas in the basins with the relevant channels including the National Assembly and the National Economic Council (NEC) subsequently.

Apart from the PIB, the NGF also discussed several other issues including the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, financial autonomy for state judiciary and legislature.

Read the full communique below:

COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE END OF THE 32ND TELECONFERENCE MEETING (9TH IN 2021) OF THE NIGERIA GOVERNORS’ FORUM HELD ON WEDNESDAY, 14TH JULY 2021

We, members of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), at our meeting held today, deliberated on issues of national importance and resolved as follows:

1. Executive Order #10 and Financial Autonomy for the State Legislature and Judiciary
The Forum has approved a common template for the implementation of the Memorandum of Action signed with the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) and the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASUN) on the implementation of financial autonomy for the State legislature and judiciary. The template was developed following a meeting of the State Attorneys General and Commissioners of Finance which held on the 25th of June 2021 at the directive of the Forum.

2. Nigerian Postal Service Bill, 2021 & Stamp Duties Collection
The Forum expressed concern with certain proposed amendments to the Principal Stamp Duties Act by the Nigerian Senate which seeks to remove the powers to administer and collect stamp duties from the relevant tax authorities (Federal Inland Revenue Service or State Internal Revenue Service, depending on the nature of the transaction) to the Nigeria Postal Service. The provisions of Section 163 of the 1999 Constitution requires that Stamp Duties on transactions between a company and an individual should be paid to the FIRS and returned to the State of derivation. The Forum resolved to engage with the National
Assembly on the matter.

3. The Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB)
The Forum is in full support of the unbundling and commercialization of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) but concerned with the proposed ownership structure of the NNPC which places ownership on the Federal Government. The NGF recommends that given that the corporation is owned by the three tiers of government, the new incorporated entity (NNPC Limited) should be owned by a vehicle that holds the interest of the three tiers of government – for now, the institution that is positioned to carry out this mandate is the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA). This amendment as well as the proposed 3% share of oil revenue to host communities and 30% share of profit for the exploration of oil and gas in the basins will be responded to at relevant channels including the National Assembly and the National Economic Council (NEC).

4. Sale of Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) Assets
The Forum will take a position on the planned privatisation of assets of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) which were listed by the Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE) without due consultation with State governments who are shareholders of the company. NDPHC is incorporated under the
Companies and Allied Matters Act as a private limited liability company with shareholding fully subscribed to by the Federal, State and Local Governments with a mandate to manage National Integrated Power Projects (NIPP) in the country.

5. Launch of the NGF Peace and Inclusive Security Initiative
The Forum put its weight behind the launch of its Peace and Inclusive Security Initiative (PISI) set up to tackle insecurity, conflicts and violence in the country. The launch of PISI which took place on 8th July 2021 heralded an important milestone for NGF as it seeks to build a more inclusive and collaborative platform to drive an urgent country-wide response to security challenges in the country.

UPDATES & PRESENTATIONS
6. The Chairman of the Forum, Governor Kayode Fayemi informed members of the inauguration of the National Steering Committee (NSC) of the National Poverty Reduction and Growth Strategy (NPRGS) chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo with a mandate to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in ten years. State Governors have been enjoined to nominate focal persons who will consolidate policy strategies put in place by State governments to end poverty in the country. The focal persons will be inducted into a technical working group chaired by the Governor of Nasarawa State, H.E Abdullahi Sule and co-chaired by the Honourable Minister of State for Finance, Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba.

7. The Forum received an update from the Governor of Lagos State H.E Babajide Sanwo-Olu on the recent rise in confirmed COVID-19 cases and call for consensual action to prevent a third wave in the country. Following the update, the Forum called on all State Governors to revive their COVID
protocols and collaborate with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to take appropriate and immediate actions to flatten the transmission curve. The Forum will interface with the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 to accelerate processes required to fast track the delivery of additional vaccines for the country.

8. An update on the States Fiscal Transparency, Accountability, and Sustainability – Program-for-Results (PforR) was made by Mr. Olanrewaju Ajogbasile, the NGF SFTAS Programme Manager, who informed State Governors of the ongoing verification exercise for the SFTAS disbursement linked indicators and debt reconciliation exercise carried out with the Federal Ministry of Finance,
Budget and National Planning (FMBNP), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Debt Management Office (DMO). The Forum commended the SFTAS programme office and welcomed the reconciliation exercise which will be seen through by the State Commissioners of Finance.

9. Following an update on the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus – Programme for Results (Nigeria CARES), from Mrs. Firo Elhassan, NGF Programme Manager, the Forum resolved to interface with the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning (FMBNP) and the Federal Ministry of Justice (MoJ) to ensure speedy approval and commencement of the programme in line with the 2021 budgets of States.

10. Sequel to a presentation by Rt. Hon. Princess Miriam Onuoha, Chairman, House of Representatives, Committee on Disabilities on the adoption of the Discrimination against Person with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act (2018), the Forum committed to actively support, through the NGF Secretariat, the domestication of the disability law in States where it has not already been passed. Since 2018, at least twelve (12) States have passed disability laws, including Ekiti, Lagos, Kwara, Kogi, Plateau, Jigawa, Ondo, Bauchi, Anambra, Niger and River State.

11. The Forum received a presentation on the Roadmap for Successful Digital Transformation Execution in States from the Chief Executive Officer of Suburban Fiber Company, Mr Bruce Ayonote. The proposal which sought to build both hard and soft digital infrastructure for State governments was welcomed by State Governors. The Forum mandated its Secretariat to facilitate the planning and partnership process with interested State governments.

12. Lastly, the Forum received a report on the Diversification and Non-oil Export Opportunities for States Post-COVID-19 from the Policy Development Facility (PDF) Bridge Programme. The Forum welcomed the study and noted that findings of the report will help strengthen the diversification agenda of States.

Governor Kayode Fayemi
Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum
14th July, 2021

North-East Governors Urge Military To Sustain Fight Against Insurgency

 

Governors of the northeast region have asked the military to sustain its momentum in the fight against insurgency in the region by taking advantage of the current division among the insurgents.

The governors made the call on Tuesday at the 5th edition of the North East Governors’ Forum held at the Taraba State Government House in Jalingo.

Speaking further, they called on the Federal Government to extend the exploration of oil to the Chad Basins so as to put the northeast states on the list of oil-rich states.

Read Also: Taraba Gov Asks FG To Speed Up Oil Exploration In North-East

Meanwhile, the Governor of Borno State who doubles as chairman of the forum, Professor Babagana Zulum and the host Governor, Darius Ishaku, harped on the need for more infrastructural development in the northeast, including electricity supply.

The meeting has now gone into a closed-door session for further discussion with a communiqué expected to be issued afterward.

Governors Meet In Abuja, Discuss Agro-Processing Zones, Others

 

Nigerian governors met in the nation’s capital Abuja on Wednesday under the aegis of the Governors Forum (NGF).

During the meeting, at the NGF Secretariat, the governors discussed plans to set up Agro-processing zones across the country, among other things.

They also agreed to do everything to ensure effective polio immunisation in their states to prevent a reemergence of the disease in the country to ensure that Nigeria is certified polio-free by the World Health Organisation.

The meeting comes hours after President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated his cabinet and assigned portfolio to ministers at a ceremony, which was attended by governors and other top government officials.

READ ALSO: Top Photos From Ministerial Inauguration Ceremony

In attendance is the chairman of the forum and the Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, his deputy and Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal.

Others are Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom; Anambra State Governor Willie Obiano; Jigawa State Governor Abubakar Badaru;  Akwa Ibom Udom Emmanuel; Delta State Ifeanyi Okowa; Adamawa Umaru Fintiri.

 

Minimum Wage: Governors Keep Mum After Meeting With Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday held a closed-door meeting with some state governors over the issue of new national minimum wage.

The meeting which was held at the presidential villa had representatives of the Nigeria Governor’s Forum (NGF) in attendance.

The governors after the meeting, however, refused to disclose the outcome of their discussions with the President to journalists.

Chairman of the NGF who is also the Governor of Zamfara Abdulaziz Yari and the Minister of Labour and productivity, Chris Ngige were at the meeting.

READ ALSO: Buhari Promises Improved Funding For Armed Forces

Others governors at the meeting include Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State, Senator Atiku Abubabakar Bagudu of Kebbi State, David Umahi of Ebonyi State, and Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State.

Enugu State and Kaduna State governors were also at the meeting.

The meeting comes a week after the governors had an emergency meeting after which they announced they would not be able to pay the N30,000 per month minimum wage being demanded by labour unions.

Minimum Wage: State Governors Offer To Pay N22,500

Chairman of Governor’s Forum and Zamfara State Governor, Abdul’aziz Yari

 

State Governors have offered to pay a sum of N22,500 as minimum wage as against the N30,000 demanded by labour.

According to a statement by the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum, Governor Abdul’aziz Yari Abubakar, the governors concluded based on their ability and capacity to pay.

The organized labour had earlier threatened to embark on a fresh nationwide industrial action from November 6.

Today (Tuesday), the unions commenced a protest in different parts of the country, insisting that the government must approve the N30,000 minimum wage and nothing less.

They maintained that by November 6, if the government fails to meet their demands, they would embark on the indefinite strike.

Read Also:
Minimum Wage: NLC Insists On November 6 To Commence Indefinite Strike

Freezing Of Benue Accounts Unconstitutional – Governors’ Forum

Chairman of Governor’s Forum and Zamfara State Governor, Abdul’aziz Yari

 

The Chairman of the Governors Forum and Governor of Zamfara State, Abdul’aziz  Yari, has described the freezing of Benue State accounts by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) as unconstitutional. 

Governor Yari disclosed this today after a closed-door meeting with the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo in Abuja.

The EFCC on Wednesday froze the bank accounts of the Benue State government domiciled in three banks.

Channels Television gathered that the freezing of the accounts by the anti-graft agency was a result of investigations which indicated alleged abuse of Benue State’s security funds.

The Benue State Government reacting to the action taken by the anti-graft agency described it as a political witch-hunt.

The Governors’ Forum chairman is also of the opinion that the move by the EFCC was wrong, adding that the state has suffered a backdrop of security challenges which has claimed the lives of many.

He called on the Federal Government to address the situation.

 

Governors Condemn Plateau Killings, Seek ‘Holistic Solution’ To Insecurity

 

The Nigeria Governors’ Forum has condemned the attack on some villages in Plateau State which left at least 100 people killed and many others displaced.

Chairman of the forum, Governor Abdul’Aziz Yari (Zamfara State), made the position of the governors known on Thursday at a press conference in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

READ ALSO: ‘The Nation Is Dying’: Soyinka Asks Buhari To Take Immediate Action Against Murderous Herdsmen

He said the killings formed the major discussion when members of the forum met for about five hours where they decried the spate of the insecurity in the country.

Governor Yari revealed that the governors sympathised with the victims, people and government of Plateau, as well as other states that have experienced similar incidents.

Read the resolutions to the meeting, he said, “The governors have unanimously called for the prosecution of perpetrators of the attack and resolve to find a quick and common solution to the security crisis in the country.

“The forum resolves to pay a condolence visit to Plateau state to commensurate with the government and people of Plateau State.”

According to Yari, the forum also decided to convene a day meeting with the security chiefs to come up with a “holistic solution to the country’s security situation”.

‘We Cannot Continue To Tolerate Killings’ – Saraki, Dogara Call For Collective Effort

Governors at the meeting include Dave Umahi (Ebonyi), Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos), Mohammed Abubakar (Jigawa), Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta), and Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia).

Others are Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Abubakar Bagudu (Kebbi), Mohammed Abubakar (Bauchi), among other governors.

The governors met barely one day after the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, held a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari over the same issues.

President Muhammadu Buhari with Senate President Bukola Saraki and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, during a meeting at the Presidential Villa in Abuja on June 27, 2018.

 

The National Assembly leaders had after the meeting said that Nigeria can no longer condone the repeated killings of innocent citizens.

Although the police authorities in Plateau maintained that 100 people were killed when suspected herdsmen attacked the villages, conflicting figures have continued to trail the death toll.

President Buhari had paid a condolence visit to the state on Tuesday where he met with the traditional rulers, religious leaders, representatives of youth, women and trade union groups among other stakeholders in the state.

He had directed the security chiefs to be vigilant and ensure that the lives and property of the people were protected.

The President also appealed to Nigerians to live in peace with one another and avoid inflammatory utterances that can promote conflicts.

Buhari Discusses State’s Welfare With Governors’ Forum

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday held a meeting with some state governors which include Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State, Emmanuel Udom of Akwa Ibom State and Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi State Governor.

The chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, Abdul’aziz Yari led the delegation to the meeting which as held at the State House on October 17, 2017.

See photos below…

 

Governors’ Forum Sets Up Committee On State Policing

Nigerian Governors' Forum
File Photo

The Nigerian Governors’ Forum has set up a six-man committee to explore the option of state policing amidst calls for restructuring in the country.

The Chairman of the Forum and Zamfara State Governor, Abdulaziz Yari, revealed this to State House correspondents after the governors met in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

The committee members, drawn from the six geo-political zones of the country,   include governors from Kwara (Abdulfatah Ahmed), Imo (Rochas Okorocha), Delta (Ifeanyi Okowa), Ekiti (Ayodele Fayose), Bauchi (Mohammed Abubakar) and Sokoto (Aminu Tambuwal).

Governor Yari said that the committee would interface with the committee of police and come up with a decision which would be presented before Acting President Yemi Osinbajo for further action.

He added that the committee would fashion out safe policing strategies in line with the requests from the Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, who was present at the meeting.

On his part, Mr Idris reiterated his call for the support of Nigerians and state governments to tackle the issues of insecurity across the country.

He noted that discussions with the governors were favorable and that the recent reinforcements of the military in Southern Kaduna might not be new, but would further strengthen security in the region.

Governors’ Forum Holds Minute’s Silence For Danbaba Suntai

Suntai

The meeting of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum began with a minute’s silence in honour of the late former governor of Taraba State, Danbaba Suntai.

The meeting, which held behind closed doors at the State House in Abuja, came the same day the former governor died.

The governors in attendance include Abdullaziz Yari (Zamfara, Jigawa), Ayodele Fayose (Ekiti), Kashim Shettima (Borno), Nasir El-Rufai (Kaduna) and Rauf Aregbesola (Osun).

Also present at the meeting are Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), Tanko Al-Makura (Nassarawa), Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo), Simon Lalong (Plateau) and Nyesome Wike (Rivers) among others.

Suntai died in London where he had been undergoing rehabilitation for the injuries he sustained during the 2012 crash.

Born in 1961, he was elected governor of Taraba in 2007 and was reelected in 2011, a year before was involved in the crash which left the rest of his tenure mired in controversy.

He would have turned 56 on Friday.

PDP Governors Forum Appoint Fayose As Chairman

PDP Governors Appoint Fayose As Forum ChairmanThe governors forum of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has appointed Governor of Ekiti state, Mr Ayodele Fayose as its chairman.

Mr Fayose was appointed to take over the affairs of the forum from former Chairman, Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo state, whose tenure as governor of the state would come to an end by February.

Addressing journalists after his appointment, the governor affirmed the commitment of the governors to reposition the party and save it from its current leadership crisis.

Building Collapse: Governors’ Forum Visits Governor Emmanuel

Building Collapse: Governors' Forum Visits Governor EmmanuelThe Nigerian Governors’ Forum has commiserated with the people of Akwa Ibom State on the recent collapse of Reigners Bible Church in Uyo, Akwa Ibom state capital which led to the death of some worshippers.

The incident occurred during the bishopric ordination of its General Overseer, Apostle Akan Weeks.

The Chairman of the forum and Governor of Zamfara State, Abdulazeez Yari delivered the message when he led the forum’s delegation on visit to Governor Udom Emmanuel at his country home, Onna.

Governor Yari was accompanied on the visit by Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto state and his Kebbi state counterpart, Abubakar Bagudu.

He said that they were in Onna to commiserate with the Governor, the government and people of Akwa Ibom state on the unfortunate collapse of the church building with the governor in attendance.

Yari thanked God for sparing the Governor’s life and commended him for personally supervising rescue operation at the scene of the incident.

The forum also acknowledged the contributions of Governor Emmanuel to efforts aimed at managing the current economic recession in the country.

Governor Udom Emmanuel thanked the delegation for the visit and commended its leadership for the existing bond of unity among the governors in spite of political differences.

He disclosed that his administration has done everything necessary to ensure that victims of the church building collapse receive the best treatment possible for quick recovery.

The Governor assured his colleagues that he remained focused and determined to make life better for the generality of the people in spite of the incident.

The visit was remarkable as the three visiting governors belong to APC while their host belongs to PDP.