OrderPaperToday – The House of Representatives has reconsidered the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) in line with the recommendations of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The decision followed a motion of recommittal moved by chairman rules and business, Edward Pwajok (PDP, Plateau) and adopted by the House.
The House therefore resolved to rescind its decisions on the affected clauses of the bill (Clauses 2 and 7) and adopted the recommendations of the president.
The House declared that the decision to withdraw the affected clauses in the bill is because the President’s observations are germane for the smooth operations of the bills.
Buhari had rejected the PIGB after it was passed by the two chambers.
He had given three major reasons including: “a) That the provision of the Bill permitting the Petroleum Regulatory commission to retain as much as 10% of the revenue generated unduly increases the funds accruing to the Petroleum Regulatory commission to the detriment of the revenue available to the Federal, States, Federal capital Territory and Local governments in the country.
“b) Expanding the scope of petroleum equalisation fund and some provisions in divergence from this administration’s policy and indeed conflicting provisions on independent petroleum equalisation fund.
“c) Some legislative drafting concerns which, if assented to in the form presented will create ambiguity and conflict in interpretation.”
The proposed law, which was conceived to liberalise the governance structure of Nigeria’s oil industry, is one of the four bills which the omnibus Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) was broken into by the legislature after over a decade of motion without movement.
While reacting to a question by OrderPaperNG on the decision to concede to the President’s demands, Chairman of the House Committee on petroleum (downstream), Joseph Akinlaja, explained that the decision was neither a concession nor oversight, but rather a compromise in the interest of the country.