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Reps Okay Bill To Plug Revenue Leakages In Oil Sector

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The House of Representatives, last Wednesday, passed a bill seeking to help plug leakages in government’s streams of income in the oil sector for second reading.
This followed a motion by the Deputy Majority Leader, Ahmed Wase, at plenary, presided over by Speaker Yakubu Dogara in Abuja.
Moving the motion, Wase (APC-Plateau) noted that as a result of lack of amendment of the Act, government has lost 21 billion dollars since 2008 when its review was due.
“Government loses about 8 million dollars daily as a result of lack of review,” he said.
According to him, a Bill for an Act to amend the Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contracts Act, 1999, will help to provide more efficient methods of computing accruable revenue of government.
“It will improve the revenue of the government of the federation.
“Such additional revenue can adequately fund part of our budget deficit, boost the economy and improve living conditions of Nigerians.
“It will improve the petroleum industry governance,” he said.
According to the lawmaker, the bill seeks to effect an amendment in the Principal Act (Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contracts Act, 1999) in order to plug leakages in government revenue streams and ensure the Federal Government maximises sufficient royalties from Production Sharing Contracts (PSC) between NNPC and International Oil Companies (IOCs).
“PSC was widely introduced in 1993 to address some of the issues faced by the Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) between the NNPC and IOCs and also to provide a suitable agreement structure for encouraging foreign investment in offshore acreage.
“Under these arrangements, the NNPC is the holder of the concession while the IOC is the contractor.
“In 1993, the NNPC entered into PSCs with eight IOCs and Nigeria is believed to have attracted much needed additional foreign investment as a result.
“These new PSCs attracted IOCs due to their favourable fiscal and legal regimes, as IOCs were given a higher profit share for the more marginal and high risk projects off shore,” he explained.
Wase said in 2000, eight new deep water licenses were offered, of which the terms of the PSC were considered to be tougher for IOCs.
He said the reduced risks involved in finding larger deep water reserves was the main reason for tougher profit oil splits in the 2000 PSC terms.
“In 2005, 14 deep water licenses were offered, of which certain alterations were again made to the PSC model contract,” he said.
He said Sections 16 of the Principal Act was amended by adding a new subsection (3) immediately after subsection (2) of the Principal Act.
Wase pointed out that: “Section 16 (3) In accordance with the provisions of subsection (1) stipulated that a royalty rate by price of 50 per cent should be for the additional revenue in the contract area of the Production Sharing Contracts under this Act.
“And the additional revenue shall be determined by the product of the volume of crude oil or condensate sold and the difference between the actual nominal sales price of the oil or condensate and the nominal value of $20 per barrel, (1993 real terms), at the time of sales, provided that the value of $20 per barrel (1993 real terms) shall be determined based on relevant US All Items Consumer Price Index (CPI) as published by the US Bureau of Labour Statistics,” he said.
He said the amendment was imperative to improving government’s revenue for the overall interest of the people.
“I therefore urge this Honorable House to consider it for passage,” he enjoined.
After a debate on the motion, the speaker, put it on a voice vote and the lawmakers unanimously supported it.
He then referred the bill to the House Committee on Petroleum Upstream for further legislative action.

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CDC Chairman Lauds Wike Over Road Projects

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A chieftain of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) and chairman, Community Development Committee (CDC) of Rumuagholu, Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State, Comrade Henry Amadi has lauded Governor Nyesom Wike for the construction of the roads in the community.
Amadi who made the commendation during an exclusive chat with The Tide at Rumuagholu said the Governor came to their rescue when the road in the area was in a very deplorable state.
According to him, “I have to be grateful to Governor Wike’s led administration; he actually came to our rescue when Rumuagholu Community road was in total disarray.
“People were pulling out their businesses because of bad road, and when he came on board during his electioneering campaign he promised constructing the road for us and after the election, Rumuagholu road was the first he attended to within six months in the office”.
Comrade Amadi further thanked the Governor for constructing the road leading to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), even as he solicited the intervention of the State Government and security agencies to check security issues in the area.
While promising to offer good leadership and accountability during his two years of service, he called on the State Government and security agencies to intervene so as to check some security challenges in the area.
He said: “Some of the legacies I want to leave behind to be remembered for at the end of my tenure is good leadership. Good leadership in the sense of been upright as a leader, look at things that are happening around you, speak out and follow the right step irrespective of who is involved, I give my judgment based on facts and not sentiments, because these are some of the things that kill leadership system.
“Another legacy is accountability. I would want to be accountable to my people, that in every six months in office, I will like to gather my youths and elders and give them break down of what I have been able to do in this community at the end of every six months,” he stated.
While noting that he has a lot to do after he emerged as the CDC Chairman of Rumuagholu Community, assuring that he will carry everybody along; just as he disclosed plans to assist indigent children to access quality education.
According to him, “I am equally looking out how to help some children in the community. That is the less privileged ones in terms of education. If you look around the community, you will find out that there are a lot of private schools in the community.
“We want to liaise or talk with owners of the schools to see if they can give scholarship even if it is two or three chances to enroll our children there, especially those parents that cannot fund their children primary and post primary education in this community,” the CDC chairman said.

 

By: Azenye Nworgu

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Bayelsa: Shock, Disappointment Envelop APC National Secretariat

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Shock and disappointment were the expressions on the faces of officials and members of staff of the National Secretariat of the All Progressives Congress following the Supreme Court Judgement which annulled the victory of the party’s Bayelsa State Governor-elect, David Lyon.
When correspondent visited the party headquarters after the judgment, yesterday, staffers of the secretariat were sighted standing in groups discussing the issue.
National Chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomhole, who arrived the party secretariat, went up to his office with some members of the party’s National Working Committee.
National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Mallam Lanre Isa- Onilu, in a telephone interview with our correspondent said, “The party will soon make its position (on the judgement) known.”

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Senate Scrutinises NDDC ‘ s N346bn 2020 Budget

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The Niger Delta Development Commission’s (NDDC) Interim Management Committee (IMC) led by Dr Joy Nunieh has finally got the Senate’s formal recognition as the senate committee sat for the commission’s 2020 budget.
The IMC members in response to the Senate’s invitation for the defence of the commission’s N346billion 2020 budget proposal, appeared before the committee, last Wednesday.
The senate committee also threw its weight behind ongoing forensic auditing being carried out on accounts of the agency by the Executive which stopped the 15-member board of the commission screened and approved by the Senate in November last year.
Senate Nwaoboshi, in his remarks at the budget defence session said: ”We are here to consider and approve the agency’s budget proposals for 2019 as forwarded to the Senate by President Muhamnadu Buhari in December, last year.
“However, in doing that we shall be guided by policy thrust of the government on budget proposals, implementation and performance”, he said.
According to him, in line with submissions made by the President on the 8th of October, 2019 during presentation of the 2020 budget estimates, performance status of projects in previous years will be strictly considered in giving appropriation to any proposal.
The agency, however, ran into troubled waters when the committee demanded for documents on all its emergency projects which could not be provided by the acting managing director.
The committee consequently directed Nunieh to make the documents available unfailingly by next Tuesday, failure of which will lead to organisation of public hearing on them.

 

By: Nneka Amaechi-Nnadi, Abuja

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