13 April 2016, Abuja – The Senate on Wednesday started the legislative procedure for the passage of the controversial Petroleum Industry Bill as the document scaled first reading on the floor of the upper chamber.
The bill has been renamed Petroleum Industry and Governance Bill after both chambers of the National Assembly, had harmonised it.
The development marked the third time that the document would pass first reading in the Senate.
The Senate and House of Representatives had recently harmonised a new draft of PIB and renamed it PIGB following a prolonged silence by the presidency on the bill as well as the continued agitation for its passage by the citizenry.
The National Assembly has been in the eye of the storm over its failure to pass PIB in two consecutive assemblies.
Critics blamed the legislative institution for rampant and prevalent corruption in petroleum industry, which they said the bill set out to salvage.
The petroleum industry framework was first conceived by the administration of the late President Umaru Yar’Adua and sent to the sixth National Assembly.
The failure of the sixth National Assembly to pass the bill compelled the immediate past government of President Goodluck Jonathan to re-present the bill to the seventh National Assembly.