Just In: Buhari approves implementation framework for Petroleum Act

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the Implementation Framework for the newly signed Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), 2021.

The President also named Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, to head the Steering Committee that will drive the implementation process.

He gave the approval on Wednesday while speaking on the PIA, during a meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly.

Other members are: Permanent Secretary Ministry of Petroleum Resources; Group Managing Director NNPC; Executive Chairman FIRS; Representative of the Ministry of Justice; Representative of the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Natural Resources, Barrister Olufemi Lijadu as External Legal Adviser, while the Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund, will serve as Head of the Coordinating Secretariat and the Implementation Working Group.

The primary responsibility of the steering committee shall be to guide the effective and timely implementation of the PIA in the course of transition to the petroleum industry envisaged in the reform program, and ensure that the new institutions created have the full capability to deliver on their mandate under the new legislation.

The committee has 12 months for the assignment with periodic updates to Mr. President.

In a brief speech during the ceremony, which preceded the week’s virtual Federal Executive Council meeting, the President described the passage of the PIB into law as the “end of decades of uncertainty and under-investment in the petroleum industry.

“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.

“Let me now commend the leadership of the 9th Assembly for their continued pursuit of our national aspiration and demonstration of mutual harmony with the Executive in the pursuit of a 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,” the President said.

Speaking to State House Correspondents after the brief ceremony, Senate President Ahmad Lawan, cautioned against tampering or manipulation in the disbursement of the 3% host communities’ provided for by the Act by the appointed people, while urging prudent deployment of the money, specifically earmarked to engender development in the host communities and end their sufferings.

He also urged Nigerians to defocus on the grievances as a result of the new act but remain optimistic that the act (which can be amended) will be implemented.

He also expressed confidence that the PIA will further incentivise greater investment in the sector.

The Nation

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