The Presidency has said the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) which was harmonised on March 28, is yet to get to the desk of President Muhammadu Buhari.
In a statement Thursday, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Ita Enang, said his findings revealed that the Bill was still going through standard legislative processes.
“Further to several enquiries by the media, interest groups, and the public in respect of within named Bill, may I please state that the said Bill has not yet been transmitted by the National Assembly to President.
“From my enquiries, the Bill is still undergoing standard operating legislative processes of the National Assembly preparatory to transmission, please,” he said.
Earlier, Omotayo Alasoadura, the chairman of the senate committee on petroleum resources (upstream), promised that the harmonised bill would be presented to Mr Buhari on March 30.
The initial delay was thought to have been caused by the fact that March 30 coincided with Good Friday during which Mr Buhari was in Lagos state on an official visit.
The PIGB is one of the four segments of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB). The three other segments of the main PIB are the Fiscal Regime Bill, the Upstream and Midstream Administration Bill and the Petroleum Revenue Bill.
If eventually the bill is signed by the president, the bill will unbundle the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, and provide for the establishment of Federal Ministry of Petroleum Incorporated, Nigerian Petroleum Regulatory Commission, Nigerian Petroleum Assets Management Company and National Petroleum Company and Petroleum Equalisation Fund.
The bill further provides that upon the recommendations of the new commission, the Minister of Petroleum Resources can “grant, amend, renew, extend or revoke any licence or lease required for petroleum or production”, pursuant to the provisions of the Act or any other enactment.
The bill has spent years at the National Assembly.