06 December 2013, Lagos – The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) on yesterday urged the Federal Government to review its decision to sell the nation’s refineries.
PENGASSAN’s National Public Relations Officer, Oluwaseyi Gambo, told the News Agency of Nigeria that government should fast-track the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill rather than outright sale of the refineries.
He said the Bill has provisions that would address and proffer solutions to the problems of the ailing refineries.
The Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, had on November 18, announced that the four ailing refineries would be privatised by the first quarter of 2014.
Also the Head of Public Communication, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Chigbo Anichebe, had said that the privatisation of the refineries would be part of ongoing oil sector reform.
However, Gambo said that the association was not averse to the sale of the refineries, provided it would be the best option.
“But we are saying that it is not the best option and it is not the best solution. Nigerians will not get the best out of this; it will just enrich some individuals to the detriment of others.
“That is why we are advising the Federal Government that it is not the best option for the country. But, if the Federal Government insists on privatising our refineries, it should be transparent and should be done through the Nigerian Stock Exchange where everybody will participate in the process.