Nigeria Lost $50bn In 10 Years Due To Uncertainty Over Petroleum Industry – Buhari

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday in Abuja said Nigeria lost an estimated $50billion worth of investments in 10 years.

This, according to him, was a result of the uncertainty of the non-passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), lack of progress and stagnation in the petroleum industry.

In his remarks at a ceremony on passage of the PIA, which preceded the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, the President said the stagnation affected the growth of the economy, citing lack of political will on the part of past administrations to actualize the needed transformation.

President Buhari said assent of the Petroleum Industry Bill on August 16, 2021, marked the end of decades of uncertainty and under-investment in the petroleum industry.

“We are all aware that past administrations have identified the need to further align the industry for global competitiveness, but there was a lack of political will to actualize this needed transformation.

“This lack of progress has stagnated the growth of the industry and the prosperity of our economy. In the past ten years, Nigeria has lost an estimated US$50billion worth of investments due to uncertainty created by the non-passage of the PIB.

“This administration believes that the timely passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill will help our country attract investments across the oil and gas value chain.

“In view of the value our Nation and investors will derive from a stable fiscal framework for the oil and gas industry, our Administration has found it necessary to work with the two chambers of the National Assembly to ensure the passage of the PIB,’’ he said.

President Muhammadu Buhari presides over the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting in Abuja on August 18, 2021.

 

According to a statement by his special media aide, Femi Adesina, the President noted that the signing of the bill was part of the administration’s commitment to building a competitive and resilient petroleum industry that will attract investment, improve the country’s revenue base, create jobs and support the economic diversification agenda.

Read Also: Buhari Approves Committee To Implement Petroleum Industry Act Immediately

President Buhari said as a “nation that depends on oil resources for the development of other sectors, Nigeria runs a Petroleum Industry that is governed largely by laws enacted over 50 years ago such as the principal legislation; the Petroleum Act of 1969 and other obsolete legislations.’’

According to him, the Presidential assent of the bill to “Petroleum Industry Act 2021” marked the beginning of the journey towards a competitive and resilient petroleum industry that will attract investments to support the nation’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.

“The ‘Petroleum Industry Act 2021’ creates a regulatory environment that would ensure efficiency and accountability across the oil and gas value chain and reposition NNPC to a commercially driven National Petroleum Company that is accountable to the Federation.

“The Act also provides for a direct benefit framework that will enable sustainable development of host communities. I appeal to the host communities to look carefully at the contents of the Bill which in the implementation will bring real and lasting benefits to them.

“Furthermore, the Act provides for deliberate end to gas flaring which would facilitate the attainment of Nigeria’s Nationally Determined Contributions of the Paris Agreement through a funding mechanism to support gas flare out project in host communities,’’ he added.

President Buhari said the administration believes that the timely passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill will help the country attract investments across the oil and gas value chain.

While directing immediate implementation of the framework for the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), he urged all relevant stakeholders to comply and reposition for full activation within 12 months.

The President said the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, will head the implementation team, urging all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA) to adjust to the transition, designed to reposition the economy.

“To consolidate the commitment of this administration to delivering the value proposition of this law, I have approved an implementation framework commencing immediately to ensure the industry envisaged in the new law begins to take shape.

“The implementation process to be headed by the Hon Minister of State, Petroleum Resources is hereby tasked with the completion of the implementation of this act within 12 months. I am, therefore, directing all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government to fully cooperate in ensuring the successful and timely implementation of this law,” he said.

President Buhari commended the leadership of the 9th Assembly for what he described as their continued pursuit of national aspiration and demonstration of mutual harmony with the executive in the pursuit of patriotic outcome in the passage of the PIB.

“I also commend the entire team in the executive that worked tirelessly to ensure the delivery of this strategic legislation for our country. I thank Nigerians and other industry stakeholders for their contributions and support in achieving this historic landmark,” he said.

The ceremony was attended by the Senate President, Dr. Ahmed Lawan, Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, Deputy Speaker Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase and other lawmakers, members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) and Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mele Kyari.

PIB: 3% Allocation Not Ideal Compensation For Host Communities, Says Rewane

 

Economist Bismarck Rewane has faulted the three percent allocated for oil-producing communities in the just-assented Petroleum Industry Bill 2021, saying it is not the ideal compensation.

The Senate and House of Representatives had passed the PIB on July 15 and 16 respectively with President Muhammadu Buhari signing the document a month after.

“Is the three percent the ideal, optimal compensation for the host communities? I will say, ‘No’ because I come from there but at the same time, what is more, important for the oil communities is the transparency of the money that is spent and the impact it has rather than having a tea party,” Rewane, the Managing Director of Financial Derivatives Company Limited, said during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Monday.

READ ALSO: PIB: 3% Too Small For Those Who Suffer Burden Of Producing Oil, Says Oyebode

In the bill, host communities in the Niger Delta are expected to benefit from three percent of an entity’s actual yearly operating expenditure of the preceding financial year in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors.

All contributions will be deposited in a trust fund for host communities.

According to a draft of the PIB, the trust fund will enhance peace and cordial relationship between oil companies and host communities.

However, some southern leaders had advocated for the percentage to be increased.

 

PIB: 3% Too Small For Those Who Suffer Burden Of Producing Oil, Says Oyebode


A Professor of International Law and Diplomacy, Akin Oyebode, has faulted the allocation of three per cent operating expenditure of oil firms to host communities.

Oyebode, who featured as a guest on Channels Television’s Politics Today, believes such a percentage amounts to nothing compared with the sufferings of the people of the affected areas.

“I think we have to recognise that what we really have are oil-bearing areas, they are not oil-producing (but) areas which bear oil, and the relationship between the international oil companies and the oil-bearing communities needs to be straightened out,” he said on Monday.

“Three per cent is a pittance for those who suffer the incumbrances of producing oil. The concomitant effect of ravage of the environment, and then the fact of the unpleasantness of heat coming from fires, cancer and other things ravaging people inhabiting the area, need to be compensated for.”

The professor was analysing how the recent signing of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) into law by President Muhammadu Buhari would affect the nation, especially the people in the oil-bearing communities.

He stressed the need for authorities to put into critical consideration the health condition of the people and the hardship they face – as a result of oil spills and other factors.

Professor Akin Oyebode was a guest on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

 

While Oyebode described the presidential assent to the Act as a step in the right direction, he recommended further amendments of the act as one of the ways to address the concerns of the affected communities.

“We all agree that the oil-bearing areas are the geese that lay the golden eggs, so they have to survive, and they have to be cushioned and defended from the vagaries of oil production,” he said. “Trying to smuggle in people over host territory, oil pipelines pass, I think it is being clever by half.”

“We must be able to separate issues. It is taking such a long time to have the PIB, so we should not throw away the baby (as people say) with the bathwater. So, it is a fine place to start to see whether we need further amendments of the PIB going forward in order to make progress,” the legal expert added.

The Petroleum Industry Act provides a legal, governance, regulatory and fiscal framework for the nation’s petroleum sector, the development of host communities, and related matters.

It was initially passed by lawmakers in the Senate and House of Representatives chambers of the National Assembly on July 15 and 16 respectively.

President Buhari assented to the act a month after the lawmakers gave the approval.

PIB: I Care Less About Whether Host Community Allocation Is 3% Or 5% – Nasarawa Gov

File photo: Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule.

 

The Governor of Nasarawa State, Abdullahi Sule, has faulted the debate over the Petroleum Industry Bill allocation for oil-producing states.

Governor Sule who was a guest on Channels TV’s Sunday Politics, said beyond figures or percentages, what matters more is the wellbeing of the states involved.

“You have to look at the totality of what goes to the communities,” he said.

“Is it just the three per cent that is going to them. People have forgotten about the 13% derivation that goes to the states. So even if you give the three per cent or five per cent is it changing the communities or is it going to some private pockets,” he asked.

Speaking further, Governor Sule said: “really, I care less about whether it is three per cent or five per cent. The most important thing is, let us go and take a look at what is happening in the Niger Delta. Even if we give them five per cent, is that the end of the crisis there? It is deeper than that.”

[Read Also] PIB: Senate Adopts 3% Allocation To Host Communities As South-South Lawmakers Kick

The host community allocation was a subject of heated debate last week as both chambers of the National Assembly struggled to decide between three and five per cent.

The allocation was one of the clauses left in consideration after the National Assembly had passed the PIB earlier this month.

If cleared, it is expected to transform the nation’s oil industry.

The three per cent is different from the 13% derivation fund which is paid to oil-producing communities from the federation account.

Instead, the three percent allocation will come from an entity’s actual yearly operating expenditure of the preceding financial year in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors.

All contributions will be deposited in a trust fund for host communities.

According to a draft of the PIB, the trust fund will enhance peace and cordial relationship between oil companies and host communities.

While the Senate on Thursday adopted the three per cent allocation despite protests by southern lawmakers, the House of Representatives, on the other hand, stepped down the controversial Bill after an hour-long closed-door session.

House Of Reps Plenary On Electoral Act

The House of Representatives has resumed plenary and has continued its deliberations on the amendment of section 52(3) of the electoral act amendment bill.

The new amendment provides that INEC may consider electronic transmission so far the national network coverage is adjudged to be adequate and secure by Nigeria Communication Commission and approved by the National Assembly.

Reps Reject Bauchi As Oil-Producing State

In this photo released by the House of Representatives, some lawmakers are seated during one of the plenaries in the lower chamber of the National Assembly in Abuja.

 

The House of Representatives has shut down a motion asking the Federal Government to declare Bauchi State as an oil-producing state.

The motion was sponsored by Yakubu Abdullahi.

But when put to vote, a greater number of lawmakers voted against the motion.

There are currently a total of eight oil-producing states who receive a 13% derivation fund from the Federal Government.

The derivation fund is paid to the states monthly to assist their oil-producing communities in tackling environmental pollution and degradation, provision of basic amenities like healthcare, potable water and paved roads, and economic empowerment of the community people.

Meanwhile, earlier, the House of Representatives had stepped down the controversial Petroleum Industry Bill after an hour-long closed-door session.

Lawmakers from the South-South had opposed the harmonised PIB allocation to host communities which was pegged at three per cent.

[Read Also] Senate Adopts 3% Allocation To Host Communities As South-South Lawmakers Kick

The lawmakers were heard chanting “five per cent” as against the three per cent at the floor of the House.

The host community allocation was one of the clauses left in consideration after the National Assembly passed the PIB earlier this month.

The PIB is expected to transform Nigeria’s oil industry.

The three per cent is different from the 13 per cent derivation fund which is paid to oil-producing communities from the federation account.

Instead, the three percent allocation will come from an entity’s actual yearly operating expenditure of the preceding financial year in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors.

All contributions will be deposited in a trust fund for host communities.

According to a draft of the PIB, the trust fund will enhance peace and cordial relationship between oil companies and host communities.

House Of Reps Steps Down PIB

A file photo of lawmakers during plenary at the House of Representatives chamber in Abuja.

 

The House of Representatives has stepped down the controversial Petroleum Industry Bill after an hour-long closed-door session.

Further deliberation is expected to hold over the decision while the House is on recess.

Earlier in the day, lawmakers from the South-South had opposed the harmonised PIB allocation to host communities which was pegged at three per cent.

The lawmakers were heard chanting “five per cent” as against the three pre cent at the floor of the House.

 

 

Meanwhile, in the Senate, the three per cent allocation to host communities was adopted despite protests by the senators.

The number in dispute is the percentage of the total operating expenses (OPEX) oil companies are expected to contribute to a trust fund created for host communities.

Two southern senators George Sekibo and Seriake Dickson raised concerns over the approval.

Senator Sekibo said he is not part of the vote on the allocation clause and Senator Dickson said his privilege had been breached as his views were not accommodated.

Read Also: Senate In Rowdy Session Over Electronic Transmission Of Results

However, Senate President Ahmad Lawan replied that the Senate had taken a resolution on the matter and could not go back on its decision.

The host community allocation was one of the clauses left in consideration after the National Assembly passed the PIB earlier this month.

The PIB is expected to transform Nigeria’s oil industry.

The three per cent is different from the 13 per cent derivation fund which is paid to oil-producing communities from the federation account.

Instead, the three percent allocation will come from an entity’s actual yearly operating expenditure of the preceding financial year in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors.

All contributions will be deposited in a trust fund for host communities.

According to a draft of the PIB, the trust fund will enhance peace and cordial relationship between oil companies and host communities.

South-South Lawmakers Chant ‘Five Per cent’ After PIB Allocation Is Pegged At Three Per cent

 

Members of the House of Representatives from the South-South have opposed the harmonised Petroleum Industry Bill allocation to host communities which has been pegged at three per cent.

The lawmakers were heard chanting “five per cent” as against the three pre cent at the floor of the House on Thursday.

The chants continued even as the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, walked in to commence plenary.

Shortly after, the House went into an executive session.

[Read Also] PIB: Nigerian Governors Fault Proposed Ownership Structure For NNPC

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

We Must Do Everything To End Insecurity, Buhari Tells NASS

President Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated his administration’s resolve to tackling all forms of insecurity in the country, vowing to deploy all resources to making the West African nation safe from threats. 

The Nigerian leader spoke on Tuesday when he hosted members of the National Assembly to a dinner at the State House Conference Centre in Abuja.

‘‘In the circumstances, we must do everything within our power, without consideration of distractions, to put an end to their activities and bring them to book,” Buhari told the lawmakers while admitting that many people take to crime due to diverse reasons including promotion of some “discredited” ideologies.

‘‘We cannot allow ourselves to be distracted from this objective, or waver in our commitment, and I am confident that together we will triumph in our present efforts.’’

‘Full Partners’

Members of the NASS during the dinner with the Nigerian leader in Abuja. Photo: Facebook/Femi Adesina

 

Buhari, who described the National Assembly as ‘‘full partners in national development,” hailed them for building and maintaining a seamless relationship with his administration.

‘‘The obligation to check and balance each other is not an invitation to conflict, and it should not be characterised by quarrelsome disagreement when consultation, engagements and compromise have proven time and again to be a more effective approach,” the 78-year-old was quoted as saying in a statement issued by his media aide, Femi Adesina.

‘‘In the 9th Assembly, you have distinguished yourselves by your conduct in office, by the scale and quality of your legislative interventions, and by your capacity for engaging with the difficult questions facing the country with maturity and competence.”

Buhari says NASS members are “full partners in national development.” Photo: Facebook/Femi Adesina

 

He lauded them for the passage of some bills including the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), saying they have “succeeded in overcoming the political and other obstacles that have, for two decades, inhibited the much-needed reforms of our Oil and Gas industry, resulting now in the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).”

 

Photo: Facebook/Femi Adesina

 

President Buhari admitted that the present administration came into power when the country was facing several issues across board, explaining that resolving these challenges requires hard work from the government.

This, Buhari believes, is the only way to reposition the country.

‘‘This moment in history requires us to make hard choices, take difficult decisions and act with diligence and patriotism to ensure that our country can survive and thrive long after we have all left,” said the Nigerian leader who took over power in 2015.

‘‘What this means in effect is that our jobs will not get any easier. However, the objectives we seek and will work together to achieve, deserve our best efforts regardless of the sacrifice.”

 

 

 

Southern Governors Set Deadline For Promulgation Of Anti-Open Grazing Law

Southern Governors during the meeting in Lagos on Monday, July 5, 2021.

 

Southern Governors have set September 1, 2021, as the deadline for the promulgation of anti-open grazing law among its member states.

The governors jointly agreed on the date during their meeting on Monday in Lagos.

“The forum frowns at selective criminal administration of Justice and resolved that arrests should be made within the ambit of the Law and fundamental human rights and set a timeline of Wednesday, 1st September 2021 for the promulgation of the anti-open grazing law in all Member States,” the governors said in a communique issued after the meeting.

READ ALSO: Kaduna Abduction: 26 Students And A Teacher Have Been Rescued – Police

During the meeting, the governors also jointly agreed that Nigeria’s next president should emerge from the southern region.

They affirmed their commitment to the unity of Nigeria and reinstated calls for state police.

The governors also deliberated on insecurity, constitutional amendment, PIB, and anti-open grazing law in all member-states.

 

See the full communique below…

 

COMMUNIQUÉ ISSUED AT THE CONCLUSION OF THE MEETING OF THE GOVERNORS OF SOUTHERN NIGERIA AT THE LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT HOUSE, IKEJA, LAGOS STATE, ON MONDAY, 5TH JULY, 2021 NIGERIA.

The Southern Governors Forum at the end of the meeting held on Monday, 5th July 2021 reviewed the situation in the Country and focused on the current security situation, constitutional amendment, Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).

Rising from the meeting, the Forum agreed on the following:

Re-affirmed their commitment to the unity of Nigeria on the pillars of equity, fairness, justice, progress, and peaceful co-existence between and amongst its people.
The Forum reiterates its commitment to the politics of equity, fairness and unanimously agrees that the presidency of Nigeria be rotated between Southern and Northern Nigeria and resolved that the next president of Nigeria should emerge from the Southern Region.
Security.  a. The Forum reviewed the security situation in the country and commends security operatives for their relentless efforts in restoring security and safety and commiserates with families and loved ones of those who have fallen in the line of duty; b. Re-emphasized the need for State Police; c. Resolved that if for any reason security institutions need to undertake an operation in any State, the Chief Security Officer of the State must be duly informed; d. the forum frowns at selective criminal administration of Justice and resolved that arrests should be made within the ambit of the Law and fundamental human rights; e. Set a timeline of Wednesday, 1st September 2021 for the promulgation of the anti-open grazing law in all Member States; and f. Resolved that Funds deducted from the Federation Account for the Nigeria Police Security Trust Fund should be distributed among the States and Federal Government to combat security challenges.

Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) Law: i. The Forum commends the National Assembly for the progress made in the passage of the PIB; ii. the Forum rejects the proposed 3% and support the 5% share of the oil revenue to the host community as recommended by the House of Representatives; iii. the forum also rejects the proposed 30% share of profit for the exploration of oil and gas in the basins; iv. However, the forum rejects the ownership structure of the proposed Nigeria National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC). The Forum disagrees that the company be vested in the Federal Ministry of Finance but should be held in trust by Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) since all tiers of Government have stakes in that vehicle.

In order to consolidate our democracy and strengthen the Electoral process, the Southern Governors’ Forum rejects the removal of the Electronic transmission of the election result from the electoral act; and also rejects the confirmation of exclusive jurisdiction in pre-election matters on the Federal High Court.

The Forum unanimously chose Lagos State as its permanent secretariat and appreciated the Governor of Lagos State for the wonderful hosting of this meeting while commending him for his good work in the State.

Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu SAN

Governor, Ondo State, and Chairman, Southern Governors’ Forum

Senate Passes Petroleum Industry Bill

Senate President Ahmed Lawan said the bill got the input of both the executive and legislative arms of government.

 

The Senate has passed the Petroleum Industry Bill known as PIB.

The bill was passed during the plenary on Thursday after careful consideration of each of the clauses.

The Senate before passing the bill met behind closed doors with the Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, and the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari.

The passage of the bill comes exactly 13 years after it was first presented to the National Assembly in 2008.

READ ALSO: Kaduna Court To Rule On El-Zakzaky’s No Case Submission On July 28

On 28 September 2020, President Muhammadu Buhari presented the PIB to the National Assembly for reconsideration.

The Bill seeks to introduce changes to the governance, administrative, regulatory, and fiscal framework of the Nigerian oil and gas industry, in order to ensure transparency, strengthen the governing institutions, and attract investment capital, among other objectives.

Senate President Ahmed Lawan said the Senate expects President Buhari to sign the bill as soon as it is transmitted.

He added that the bill got the input of both the executive and legislative arms of government.

The Senate then adjourned till July 6, 2021.