May 21, 2024
PIB: Spaces for Change identifies downsides, upsides 
SPACES FOR CHANGE reacts as President Buhai assents to Petroleum Industry Act
Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri, Executive Director of Spaces for Change
– By Alison_Godswill

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PIB: Spaces for Change identifies downsides, upsides 

.Urges legislators to review

By Eyo Nsima

AS the Senate and House of Representatives, plan a joint session to review the Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB, Spaces for Change, have identified many downsides and upsides in the bill.
Downsides
For instance, in her submission, obtained by The Daily, http://www.thedaily-ng.com, Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri, Executive Director, Spaces for Change, a Non-governmental organization, NGO, stated: “No provision for the President not to appoint himself as the petroleum minister.

“Overriding power vested in the Minister to regulate, revoke and assign interests in petroleum prospecting licenses and petroleum mining leases.

“No provisions for the monitoring of Midstream Gas Infrastructure Fund investments.

“Provision of 10 percent on Oil Prospecting License, OPL, 10 percent rent on Oil Mining Lease, OML and 30 percent of NNPC Limited’s profit for oil and gas for Frontier Exploration Fund for the development of frontier acreages

“Allows for continuous flaring of gas, which will lead to continuous devastation of the local environment.

“Commission or Authority to approve environmental management plan instead of the Federal Ministry of Environment (FMEnv) as prescribed by the EIA Act.

“Commission or Authority to call for adjustment of the environmental management plan approved by FMEnv.

“Provision of 5% (by House of Representatives) and 3% (by Senate) of actual operating expenditure in the upstream and 2% in the midstream and downstream for host community development trust. Who and/or what determines the actual operating expenditure of an operator?

“No provision for where a settlor has more than one community as host, what happens?

“Overriding to the settlor in determining the selection process, the procedure for the meeting, financial regulations, the administrative procedure of Host community board of trustees, and appointment of secretary of the board of trustees.

“Provision of 5% of Host Community Development Fund to Settlor for special projects.

“Settlor to provide a matrix for distribution of the trust fund to the host communities.

“Provision for the selection of anon-member of the host community as an executive member into the Management Committee while non-executive member to be nominated by the host community.

“The bill is silent on women and vulnerable groups’ representation in the constitution of the board of trustee or management committee.

“Settlor to conduct host community needs assessment.

“Penalty of host community entitlement forfeiture to the cost of repairs wherein any year an act of vandalism, sabotage or other civil unrest occurs that causes damage to petroleum and designated facilities or disrupts production activities within the host community. Provided the interruption is not caused by technical or natural cause. Who determines and what constitutes technical or natural cause?

“No time frame for remittance to Federation accounts all money accruing to government.”

It added: “The bill is silent on the role of important stakeholders, such as traditional rulers, non-governmental organizations, faith-based organizations, etc., that play an active part in ensuring that communities participate meaningfully in oil sector consultations and decision-making.”

Upsides

It also stated: “Imposition of gas flare penalty arising from midstream operations which shall be for the credit of the Midstream Gas Infrastructure Fund, and shall be utilized for midstream gas infrastructure investment within the Host Community of a designated facility. In doing this, host communities of a designated oil and gas facility will receive direct investment from monies received from gas flaring as penalties.

“The upstream, midstream, and downstream regulators (The Commission and Authority) shall make regulations which include a grievance mechanism to resolve disputes between settlors and host communities.

“Settlor to set up Host Community Trust in consultation with the Host Community.

“Revocation of applicable of license or lease for the failure of license or leaseholder to incorporate host community trust.

“Establishment of Midstream Gas Infrastructure Fund which shall be among others to reduce or eliminate gas flare.

“Embargo on the declaration of new marginal fields.

“Continuous payment of compensation by Licensee or Lessee for land occupy even when the land is in dispute.

“Provision of dispute resolution mechanism between a lessee, licensee or permit holder and the Commission or the Authority shall be settled by a Federal High Court and between settlors and host communities by The Commission and Authority regulation.

“Settlor to set up Host Community Trust in consultation with the Host Community.

“Revocation of applicable of license or lease for the failure of license or leaseholder to incorporate host community trust.

“Provision of timely remittance to Federation Account all monies collected from the petroleum industry that is due to Government.”

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