Save oil money in Liberian banks, citizens urge govt

johnson sirleaf26 November 2013, Monrovia – Citizens of Liberia’s Grand Bassa County have called on the National Legislature to pass laws that will compel the government to save all incomes generated from the oil and gas sector in Liberian Banks, should the country discover commercial oil.

They said such law, when passed will accelerate development in the country and strengthen the economy.

Making the disclosure last week in Buchanan City, Grand Bassa County, a representative said the citizens also want elections to be conducted for the heads of the country’s emerging oil and gas industrial and should not be appointed as is being proposed by the Draft Petroleum Exploration and Production Act of 2013 and the Draft National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) Act of 2013.

The Government of Liberia has at least 10% participating rights and interests in all petroleum agreements, while 5% rights and interests go to citizens’ participation. The State and citizens’ participation interests shall be managed by the NOCAL.

Part eight (8), number five of the Draft Petroleum Exploration and Production Act of 2013 provides that “The citizens participation fund shall be managed by a trustee, which shall be a responsible international trust company selected by the Minister of Finance under a trust agreement conforming to the requirements of this section subject to the approval of the president.”

The citizens said they want this provision of the law be amended to reflect that the funds be kept in Liberia.

The citizens, among other things, want the Government of Liberia establish Oil College in the country to train Liberians in the Hydrocarbon Industry and provide international scholarship for youths to study aboard.

The citizens furthered that they want more benefits be given to counties that will discover oil off their shores and International Oil Companies (IOCs) be made to construct offices in the counties where they operate.

At the same time, the Citizens of Grand Bassa County have urged the government to stop companies from flying expatriates from Takrodi in Ghana to the rags off the shores of Liberia, but expatriates should rather be flown into the country and made to undergo immigration formalities before they are sent to the rags.

– The Informer

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