The pioneer Director General of Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), Osaro Onaiwu has charged the Southern governors to back the calls for oil major companies to relocate to their host communities.
Onaiwu, who urged the governors of the South-west, especially Lagos state governor, to support the relocation of the oil major to their host communities, also urged the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to relocate from Abuja to host communities.
Recall that some lawmakers have been calling on these oil companies to relocate to the their host communities.
Specifically, Senator Albert Bassey Akpan (PDP, Akwa Ibom North East) and 23 other Senators had on Tuesday sponsored a motion, calling on the oil companies to relocate to their host communities.
To this end, the Senate had mandated its committees on Petroleum Resources Upstream, Downstream Petroleum Sector and Gas to liaise with the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the Presidential Implementation Committee on the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), to facilitate the relocation of oil and gas companies in Nigeria to their various operational bases in host communities to ensure smooth operations.
The Senate reached its resolution after it considered a motion on the “Urgent need to encourage all Multinational and Nigerian Oil and Gas Companies to relocate to their Operational Bases.”
Senator Bassey, who sponsored the motion, had said, “the Senate note with concern that multinational and Nigeria oil and gas companies have over the years been operating from their respective operational bases until militancy and insecurity in the host communities in the Niger Delta became the order of the day.
“Also notes that the reason proffered by the oil and gas companies for not relocating to their host communities has always been due to insecurity and hostilities in the host communities.
“Aware that operating outside the host communities and operational base is the reason for the high cost of production which has been the bane of the country’s oil and gas industry, militating against maximum revenue from crude oil and gas sales to the federation account.
“Recalls that this high cost of production has been one of the most contentious elements of our industry value chain;
“Convinced that the recent passage and signing into law of the Petroleum Industry Act, 2021(PIA) by the National Assembly and the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria respectively, is a major milestone towards the restoration of a lasting peace in the host communities;
“Further convinced that the Petroleum Industry Act, 2021, now place certain responsibilities on the security, peace and safety of oil and gas infrastructure on the host communities to safeguard and ensure peaceful coexistence between oil and gas companies and their host communities;
“Further convinced that is an opportunity to restore, recover and rehabilitate the massive and huge infrastructural facilities abandoned by the various oil and gas companies in their various operational bases to ensure their full utilization; and
“Assured that the relocation of these companies to their host communities will further boost development in those areas and enhance the corporate social relationships and strengthen out collective resolve to considerably reduce the contentious cost of production and ensure adequate returns to federation account.”
Backing the efforts of the lawmakers, Onaiwu urged the Southern governors to as a matter of urgency support every move for oil major companies to return to their host communities.
“The decision of the governors will go a long way to motivate these companies to relocate. That sense of security will be there when the governors take their stand for the companies to relocate to their host communities.
“The governors have serious role to play for the oil companies to relocate because they are the chief security officers of these states. This is the time for them to take position and not playing politics with issues that have great benefits for the host communities and the nation.
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