Petroleum Industry Act to be implemented within 12 months
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a committee to immediately commence the implementation of the newly passed Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).
The steering committee which is to be headed by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva will have a duration of 12 months for the completion of the assignment.
President Buhari gave the approval on Wednesday while giving a remark on the Act which he assented to two days ago.
He spoke during a meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly led by the President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
The committee has as members, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Group Managing Director of NNPC, Executive Chairman of Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), as well as representatives of the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
Other members are the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Natural Resources, Olufemi Lijadu, who will serve as the External Legal Adviser, while the Executive Secretary of Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) will serve as Head of the Coordinating Secretariat and the Implementation Working Group.
The President pointed out that relevant ministries, departments, and agencies have been directed to work with Sylva towards the successful completion of the implementation process.
He decried that the lack of political will has hampered the growth of the industry, adding that the country has lost about $50 billion in the last 10 years.
However, President Buhari is hopeful that the new Act will coordinate the activities of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and reposition it for further progress.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, in a statement said, “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 programme, and ensure that the new institutions created have the full capability to deliver on their mandate under the new legislation.’’