11 April 2018, Sweetcrude, Abuja – Following last week’s passage of the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) by the National Assembly, some concerned groups have urged President Muhammadu Buhari not to sign the bill into law.
The groups, which comprise of Civil Society and Community-based Organisations, in a statement released to newsmen in Abuja, noted that the bill passed by both Houses of the National Assembly does not meet the rigorous expectations of Nigerians for oil industry governance law.
According to the statement,”There are inherent gaps and dangers in the moves to sign the PIGB into law as it was fraught with defects in the areas of environmental protection.
“The deliberate silence of the bill on the outlawing of gas flaring with a definite date was not only ominous and a major setback for the environment, but also a big blow to the people of the Niger Delta, who had been subjected to gas intoxication through gas flaring for decades.”
The group said they had hoped that the lawmakers would have used the opportunity created by the petroleum legal regimes review to “put an end to decades of the deplorable practice of gas flaring that had put Nigeria in the hall of environmental shame by enacting clear-cut provisions for its criminalisation.”
“The failure of the National Assembly to do this effectively reinforced the Niger Delta region’s feeling of oppression and state injustice, saying that such acts by state institutions as the National Assembly and the consequent sentiments would ultimately make peace and security elusive in the region,” the statement added.