The Senate on Thursday expressed worry over the failure of several attempts to pass the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB).
The National Assembly has been unable to pass the controversial PIGB for over 12 years.
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, expressed the displeasure of the upper chamber during the screening of Senator Tayo Alasoadura for confirmation as a minister.
Before Alasoadura who chaired the Senate Committee on Petroleum (upstream) in the Eight Senate was accorded the privilege to take a bow and go, noted that the Ninth Senate and by extension, the Ninth National Assembly, should repackage the PIGB as passed by the 8th National Assembly re-present to President Muhammadu Buhari for assent.
He said that the Eight National Assembly, as a way forward for the PIGB, split the bill into four different segments with the most important being the Petroleum Governance Bill.
He said, “Unfortunately after all the legislative input, consideration and passage of this all important bill, it was not assented to but as a Parliament , there is the need to revisit it and re-forward it to the President for assent
“This appeal is being made because it is the passage of the PIGB that will drive the required reforms in the petroleum industry which is very critical to the nation’s economy”
Lawan noted that though the appeal made by Alasoadura was good, a new approach will be adopted to get the bill passed and assented to by the President.
Lawan noted that from 2007 till date, the bill has been pushed forward for consideration and passage either by the executive or legislature without the required collaboration between them.
He said, “In 2007, the bill was sent for consideration and passage by the National Assembly by the Executive which was characterised with so many versions which invariably accounted for its failure to pass.
“In 2011 during the 7th Senate, the bill also came from the executive but required legislative considerations were not concluded on it.
“In 2015 during the 8th Senate, the bill emanated from the Senate and by extension, the National Assembly, considered and passed but not assented to by the President.
What is on ground now is for both arms of government to come together and work the bill into fruition.
“On our part, our relevant committees on Petroleum when reconstituted will swing into action to get the very important assignment done.
“All we require is to have the synergy with the executive arm of government to break the jinx holding back the petroleum industry.”
Source: The Nation