MATTERS ARISING CONT’D: Don’t Politicise the PIB brand

Mrs. Diezani alison-madueke sept

Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, has urged stakeholders in the oil and gas industry not to politicise or personalise the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) currently before the National Assembly, stressing that the bill is geared towards providing a win-win scenario for all stakeholders in the petroleum sector.

The minister who made the submission at the National Assembly during a two-day public hearing by the Senate Joint Committee on the PIB, said the responsibility for the exercise of the powers proposed in the bill for the president and petroleum minister would ultimately rest on any administration in power at the time and so should not be personalized.

Alison-Madueke argued that it was important for the law to sufficiently empower any administration to act in the best interest of Nigerians, pointing out that the inculcation of foreign practices should not be at the detriment of our social-cultural norms. “Whilst we take best practices from other developed regions, we should also work within the understanding of our own socio-economic and social-cultural norms, and create entities and policies that will work and are not destined to fail from the word go.”

EU to ban stolen oil from Nigeria

The European Parliament has taken a decision to stop the purchase of stolen oil from Nigeria in Europe. This was one of the landmark decisions taken at the meeting of the members of the African, Caribbean, Pacific Parliaments and their European Union counterparts (ACP-EU) at the conclusion of their three-day regional meeting recently held in Abuja. This will ensure that any crude oil meant to be sold in the European market is to be accompanied with a certificate of origin.

Mitchell Rivasi (Acting Co- President ACP- EU) and Joyce Laboso (Co- Secretary General) told reporters that the need to stop the huge loss of Nigeria’s oil to organised syndicates of oil thieves necessitated the decision.

In Rivasi’s words, “We want to ban European refineries from buying un-certificated oil. 400, 000 barrels a day is a huge loss. We need to get traceability of oil to avoid theft. The oil companies are involved in this and everybody is making big money. The bunkering tankers are better equipped than the Nigerian Navy; this is a huge international organised crime. We did it with diamond; we can also do it with oil.”

The Federal Government in a recent National Economic Council (NEC) meeting said 400, 000 barrels of oil, an equivalent of N7.3million, is lost daily to oil thieves.

Dr. Sam amadi sept

NERC: Electricity Companies Not Poorly Funded
The Federal Government has given approval for the recapitalisation of the Bank of Industry (BOI) to the tune of N750 billion. General Manager of the bank, Mr Joseph Babatunde, who disclosed this recently said a time frame has however not been set for release of funds. He said that the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Nigeria were working on the modalities for its release.
According to him, under-capitalisation is a major factor challenges militating against the effective performance of the bank “This hindered the bank’s developmental impact and attraction of needed long term funds from international and multilateral agencies. Government, in the last couple of years, has been very proactive in the area of addressing the dearth of long term investable funds required by the manufacturing sector,” he said.

Mrs. Omobola johnson sept

Information technology: Minister Inaugurates Broadband Council
Giving the nod of approval of the country’s broadband policy and its formal presentation to industry stakeholders recently, the Minister of Communications Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson, has inaugurated the Broadband Council that will drive its implementation.
The council, which was inaugurated in Abuja recently, is made up of 19 members and is chaired by the Minister. The members will work on implementation modalities for the newly developed and approved Nigerian National Broadband plan for the period 2013 – 2018. Terms of reference of the council include: providing periodic reports on the progress of the plan, facilitating the coordination and collaboration of the various stakeholders during plan implementation, ensuring that relevant agencies, institutions and the general public are actively engaged.

The Members of the Broadband Council are, Chairman Openmedia Group, Engr. Ernest Ndukwe; Chairman of Visafone, Mr. Jim Ovia; Executive; Vice Chairman, NCC, Dr. Eugene Juwah; Chief Executive Officer, Main One Cable Company, Ms. Funke Opeke; Managing Consultant, Telecom Answers Associates, Titi Omo-Ettu; Chairman, Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Gbenga Adebayo; President, Nigeria Computer Society, Mr. Ademola Aladekomo; and President, Nigeria Internet Group, Mr. Bayo Banjo.

Other members include President, Association of Telecommunication Companies in Nigeria, (ATCON), Mr. Lanre Ajayi; Secretary, Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF), Mr. Abdullahi Maikano; Country Manager, Google Global Services Nigeria Limited, Mrs. Juliet Ehimuan-Chiazor ; Director, Etisalat, Mr. Junaid Dikko; Chief Executive Officer, Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria, Mr. Mohammed Rudman; Managing Partner, Ayoola BabatundeOke & Co, Mr. Ayoola Oke; Director, Ministry of Communication Technology, John Ayodele; member of the Zinox Group, Mr. Emmanuel Onyeje; and Principal Consultant, Business Unusual Limited, Mr. JinmiSonuga.