President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a steering committee to oversee the process of implementation of the newly signed Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).
The steering committee is headed by the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva.
The president, who announced this while marking the passage the PIA which he signed into law on Aug. 16, said Nigeria lost an estimated 50billion dollars worth of investments in ten years, created by the uncertainty of non-passage of the PIB, lack of progress and stagnation in the petroleum industry.
According to the president, the committee is tasked with the completion of the implementation of this act within 12 months.
He, therefore, directed all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government to fully cooperate in ensuring the successful and timely implementation of the PIA.
The implementation process to be headed by the Hon Minister of State, Petroleum Resources is hereby tasked with the completion of the implementation of this act within 12 months. I am therefore directing all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government to fully cooperate in ensuring the successful and timely implementation of this law.
“To consolidate the commitment of this administration to delivering the value proposition of this law, I have approved an implementation framework commencing immediately to ensure the industry envisaged in the new law begins to take shape.
“The implementation process to be headed by the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources is hereby tasked with the completion of the implementation of this act within 12 months.
“I am therefore directing all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government to fully cooperate in ensuring the successful and timely implementation of this law,’’ he said.
The president maintained that the signing into law had become necessary in view of the fact that Nigeria runs a Petroleum Industry that is governed largely by laws enacted over 50 years ago such as the principal legislation; the Petroleum Act of 1969 and other obsolete legislations.
According to him, in the past ten years, Nigeria has lost an estimated 50billion dollars worth of investments due to uncertainty created by the non-passage of the PIB.
He said: “We are all aware that Past Administrations have identified the need to further align the industry for global competitiveness, but there was lack of political will to actualize this needed transformation.
“This lack of progress has stagnated the growth of the industry and the prosperity of our economy.
“In the past ten years, Nigeria has lost an estimated 50billion dollars worth of investments due to uncertainty created by the non-passage of the PIB.
“This administration believes that the timely passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill will help our country attract investments across the oil and gas value chain.’’
The president commended the two Chambers of the National Assembly for ensuring the passage of the PIB.
He noted that his signing of the Petroleum industry bill on Aug. 16, 2021 to “Petroleum Industry Act 2021” marked the beginning of the journey towards a competitive and resilient petroleum industry that would attract investments to support the nation economic recovery and growth plan.
According to the president, the PIA creates a regulatory environment that will ensure efficiency and accountability across the oil and gas value chain and reposition NNPC to a commercially driven National Petroleum Company that is accountable to the federation.
“The Act also provides for a direct benefit framework that will enable sustainable development of Host Communities. I appeal to the host communities to look carefully at the contents of the Bill which in the implementation will bring real and lasting benefits to them.
“Furthermore, the act provides for deliberate end to gas flaring which would facilitate the attainment of Nigeria’s Nationally Determined Contributions of the Paris Agreement through a funding mechanism to support gas flare out project in host communities.
“Similarly, it acknowledges global energy transition and made necessary provisions for NNPC to invest in renewable energy,’’ he added.
The president commended the two Chambers of the National Assembly for ensuring the passage of the PIB.
“Let me now commend the leadership of the 9th Assembly for their continued pursuit of our national aspiration and demonstration of mutual harmony with the Executive in the pursuit of a patriotic outcome in the passage of the PIB.
“I also commend the entire team in the executive that worked tirelessly to ensure the delivery of this strategic legislation for our country,’’ he said.
President Buhari also thanked Nigerians and other industry stakeholders for their contributions and support in achieving this historic landmark.
Other members of the implementation committee include: Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Group Managing Director, NNPC, Executive Chairman, FIRS, representative of the Ministry of Justice and representative of the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Natural Resources, Olufemi Lijadu, will serve as External Legal Adviser, while the Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund, will serve as Head of the Coordinating Secretariat and the Implementation Working Group.
The primary responsibility of the steering committee shall be to guide the effective and timely implementation of the PIA in the course of transition to the petroleum industry envisaged in the reform programme.
It is also to ensure that the new institutions created have the full capability to deliver on their mandate under the new legislation.
The committee has 12 months duration for the assignment, and periodic updates will be given to Mr President. (NAN)
APC PCC commends CBN, Buhari for extension of naira swap deadline
The All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council has commended President Muhammadu Buhari, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and its Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele for extending the naira notes swap deadline.
Buhari on Sunday approved a 10-day extension for Nigerians to swap their old N1,000, N500 and N200 notes for the new ones.
Emefiele announced this after a meeting with the President in his Daura country home.
The extension followed complaints by Nigerians who experienced difficulties getting the new notes via ATMs and over the counter from banks.
The APC PCC, in a statement by its Director, Media & Publicity, Mr. Bayo Onanuga, praised the move.
It said: “We want to commend the Central Bank of Nigeria and Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele for listening to the voice of well-meaning Nigerians on the exigency of extending the deadline for change of old N200, N500 and N1000 naira notes to the new ones.
‘Following difficulties experienced by Nigerians from across the country from getting the new notes via ATMs and over the counter from Banks, many Nigerians especially requested an extension of the 31 January 2023 deadline.
“We welcome the 10-day extension of the deadline and the additional seven days of grace.
“This window will enable Nigerians especially those in rural and remote areas to have more time to change their old notes and avert the panic that would have followed.”
It said the President deserved “special commendation” for approving the extension “and for his leadership and statesmanship.”
The APC PCC added: “In the same vein, we praise our presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu for his forthrightness in addressing the concerns of Nigerians at his campaign rally in Abeokuta last week.
“Asiwaju Tinubu didn’t take the easy road by shying away from what would have caused serious inconvenience for our teeming masses.
“Asiwaju showed leadership and compassion for the welfare of Nigerians, at the most appropriate time.”
ASSBIFI commends extension of validity of old Naira notes
The Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI) on Sunday in Lagos endorsed the extension of the validity of old naira notes from Jan. 31 to Feb. 10.
Its president, Mr Olusoji Oluwole, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the CBN decision to extend the deadline was a step in the right direction.
CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, in a statement on Sunday said the CBN added a 10-day extension of the deadline of Jan. 31 to Feb. 10, to allow for the collection of more old notes.
He also noted that Nigerians would still have grace period to deposit their old notes directly with the CBN until Feb. 17.
“It is a step in the right direction, especially in providing more time for the return of old notes after the actual date of invalidation.
“CBN, however, needs to proactively monitor and address sufficient availability and distribution of the new notes.
“It should also increase sensitisation of, and probably incentivising the general public on the cashless policy to reduce the pressure on cash,’’ Oluwole said.
Banks have been contending with increased number of customers rushing to beat the Jan. 31 deadline given by CBN for the return of old naira notes which would cease to be legal tender.
New N200, N500 and N1,000 notes became legal tender on Dec. 15, 2022 after they were unveiled by President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja on Nov. 23, 2022.
Many bank customers, however, complained that the new notes were not readily available and have yet to circulate adequately four days to the expiration of the old notes.
New Naira Notes: CBN Extends Deadline Till February 10
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has extended the deadline for the use of the old notes till February 10.
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, announced the extension in a statement signed on Sunday.
He explained that the apex bank has sought approval from President Muhammadu Buhari to extend the deadline for the use of the old notes by 10 days.
“Based on the foregoing, we have sought and obtained Mr President’s approval for the following: A 10-day extension of the deadline from January 31 to February 10 to allow for the collection of more old notes legitimately held by Nigerians,” the statement read.
“A 7-day grace period, beginning from February 10 to February 17, in compliance with Sections 20(3) and 22 of the CBN Act allowing Nigerians to deposit their old notes at the CBN after the February deadline when the old currency would have lost its Legal Tender Status.”
The CBN Governor also solicited the cooperation of all Nigerians in ensuring a hitch-free process for the implementation of the policy.
Before the apex bank extended the use of the naira note, many Nigerians experienced difficulty in lodging their old banknotes.
The scramble by many Nigerians to meet the initial January 31 deadline has been chaotic as many of them flood banking halls with huge cash in old notes to exchange them with new ones.
Others are seen in long queues at the few ATM points having the new naira notes in different parts of the country to have access.
The naira redesign was greeted by criticism by some Nigerians, including the presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), saying the policy was intended to scuttle his presidential ambition.
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